Chris Nielsen

Chris Nielsen

Chris is the director of Dam Safety for Operation Support, Natural Resources from the Department of Natural Resources, Mines and Energy.

River Regulation and Sustainable Dam Management – Resilient Dam Management

Dam failure can be a catastrophic event with unacceptably high consequences to life, property, infrastructure and the environment. Although dams may be designed, maintained and operated in reflection of this, no dam can be guaranteed to be 100% safe particularly in a changing environment.

The Department of Natural Resources Mines and Energy is the dam safety regulator in Queensland. The approach to regulation is risk based, pro-active and precautionary, with more rigorous standards applied for dams with greater downstream consequences. Various regulatory structures are in place to identify and appropriately regulate dams that could cause harm as well as targeted campaigns to address identified, prioritised risks. Such approaches are best practice when considering the often catastrophic nature of risks associated with dams.

The presentation will provide a brief overview of the regulators role and describe how targeted intervention activities are providing an efficient means of maintaining dam safety resilience.

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