Science News

BMT Picks Up National Award for Planning Excellence

BMT WBM (BMT), a subsidiary of BMT Group, the leading international maritime design, environmental and engineering consultancy, has been recognized at the Planning Institute of Australia (PIA) National Awards for Planning Excellence which took place in Melbourne in May 2015.

Working with its partners and client, BMT won the ‘best planning ideas – small project’ award category for their outstanding work in the Climate Change Adaptation Plan for Choiseul Bay Township, Solomon Islands. BMT previously won awards for the same project in the PIA Queensland state awards, automatically nominating them for the National Awards.

This innovative plan for the low-lying Solomon Islands Township details the staged relocation of the Choiseul capital to the adjacent mainland in order to address coastal hazards such as tsunami and sea level rise. This is the first time anywhere in the Pacific Islands that a provincial capital with all its services and facilities will be relocated due to coastal hazards and climate change. BMT worked with The Australian Government Department of the Environment, Buckley Vann Town Planning Consultants and the School of Civil Engineering at the University of Queensland on this project.

Dr Philip Haines, Operations Director, Water & Environment at BMT WBM, and Project Manager for the study, comments: “Being recognized at a National level for this project is a fantastic achievement for the company. The Choiseul Bay Township climate change adaptation plan has been hailed as a best practice model for natural hazard resilience planning by the Solomon Islands National Government and I’m delighted that the PIA National judges have recognized the importance of this work. Relocation is the only option available that will keep the community safe and will allow for future growth and prosperity of the capital and the province.”

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