Alternative Commonwealth Capabilities for Crisis Response Discussion Paper

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​The Australian Government is currently seeking to enhance Commonwealth crisis responses and recovery capabilities. This comes as Australia faces increasingly frequent and severe crises. The Department sought views on how the nation can achieve this and released a discussion paper.

Climate change will likely make future crises increasingly complex, consecutive and cascading. This applies across a spectrum of hazards. This was evident during the 2019-20 Black Summer bushfires and the COVID-19 pandemic where the emergency response, national supply chains and delivery of health services were severely impacted.

A whole-of-society effort is needed to build national capacity and resilience, while enhancing the Commonwealth’s ability to support States and Territories as primary first responders.

Currently, the Australian Defence Force (ADF) is the Government’s primary non-financial means to assist State and Territory-led crisis responses, should it be requested. The Defence Strategic Review recommended that the ADF should only be used as the last resort for domestic aid to the civil community. While the ADF will always be available for specialist capabilities, the Government needs viable crisis response alternatives to the ADF and an ability to draw on enhanced latent industrial capacity to uplift its capability when needed.

The public consultation period for the discussion paper was open from 9 August 2023 to 20 September 2023. Public submissions to the discussion paper are published below.

List of submissions to the discussion paper

Submissions A to F​

Submissions G to N

Submissions O to S

Submissions T to Z​

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