Council leading on actions to build resilient Belfast
6 Feb 2020
People from across Belfast joined the Lord Mayor today to share their views on how to ‘future-proof’ the city and what a resilient Belfast means to them.
The event at Portview Trade Centre in the east of the city brought people together to give their feedback on Belfast City Council’s draft resilience strategy, currently out for public consultation.
The strategy outlines three key areas for action – climate, children and young people, and connectivity.
Lord Mayor of Belfast Councillor Daniel Baker said: “Our aim as a Council is to show leadership on taking the necessary actions to ensure we have a city that is resilient to future shocks and stresses – those we know are coming and can be prepared for, like the impact of climate change, and those which are unexpected.
“Resilience is a word that gets used a lot and it has been really interesting to hear from people today, from a range of backgrounds and disciplines, about what resilience means to them.
“From a Council perspective, we want to be able to deliver our Belfast Agenda and that could be compromised unless we are preparing for risks, and building our resilience to be able to withstand shocks such as flooding or cyber attacks, or stresses on our city such as the prevalence of mental ill health in communities right across the city.”
As well as needing to ensure that the city’s infrastructure can cope with any future pressures, the draft document highlights the importance of building an economically resilient city and one that can ‘bounce back’ from challenges.
It also stresses the importance of addressing climate change and preparing for the impact it will have on Belfast.
Councillor Baker added: “Climate change has reached a point where we need to make urgent and concerted efforts to understand and prepare for its impact.
“Our goal is to transition Belfast to an inclusive, low carbon, climate resilient economy within a generation, so there is work to be done; but today I have been encouraged by the will that exists - not just by our city partners – but by communities and individuals who are committed to taking action and helping us to achieve our aims.
“There are many ways we can build our resilience as a city – being flexible, creating a sense of shared ownership, being integrated and inclusive in our approach, and being resourceful when it comes to problem solving.”
Members of the public can have their say on the draft resilience strategy for Belfast by visiting the Council’s website www.belfastcity.gov.uk/resilientbelfast
As well as the online public consultation, Council will also be hosting a number of engagement events to raise awareness of the resilience strategy in local communities, and with stakeholders including businesses, and the community and voluntary and arts sectors.