Role statement - National Emergency Management Agency

National Emergency Management Agency

The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) is Australia's national government disaster management agency and its responsibilities span disaster risk reduction, critical incident planning, disaster preparedness, crisis management, and disaster recovery. NEMA works closely with Victoria, other state and territory emergency management organisations to achieve emergency management objectives.  

State and territory governments have responsibility for coordinating and planning the response to, and recovery from, disasters within jurisdictions. Through NEMA, and according to the Australian Government Crisis Management Framework, the Australian Government coordinates, collaborates with, and assists the states and territories to respond to disasters, and improve the overall resilience of Australia, Australians and the things that Australians value. 

NEMA administers the Australian Government’s Disaster Ready Fund in collaboration with states and territories, which provides funding to ensure Australian communities are better prepared, less exposed and in the best possible position to recover when disasters strike. 


Activity Critical task alignment / activity source

NEMA contributes to the funding and/or support of several capability development activities, often in partnership with other Australian Government Agencies and the states and territories. Activities include the National Aerial Firefighting Centre, Australian Tsunami Warning System, Bushfire Arson Prevention, Emergency Alert, Australian Medical Assistance Teams and Disaster Assistance Response Teams and the Australian Institute of Disaster Resilience 


NEMA is responsible for progressing and implementing national disaster risk reduction policy, in line with the National Disaster Risk Reduction Framework. The Framework sets the five-year cross-sector foundation from 2019-2023 to address systemic disaster risk and was endorsed by COAG in March 2020  1.1, 1.3

Response (including Relief)

Activity Critical task alignment / activity source

NEMA coordinate the Australian Government response under the Australian Government Disaster Response Plan (COMDISPLAN) to emergencies in support of the states and territories 

3.1, 3.2

NEMA operate the National Situation Room, which provides whole-of-government situational awareness and response options to inform national decision-making during a domestic crisis or the domestic implications of an international crisis. This includes the Crisis Coordination Team which coordinates physical assistance requested by a state under the Australian Government Disaster Response Plan (COMDISPLAN), as well as briefing and support to executive decision-makers in the Australian Government, the State and Territory governments and non-government agencies

NEMA work in partnership with Commonwealth departments, state and territory governments, the private sector, civil society, academia, governments of other countries, and multilateral organisations to prepare for, respond to, and recover from natural disasters. The NEMA also works in close partnership with Australia’s science agencies, the BoM, Geoscience Australia and the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) 



Activity Critical task alignment / activity source

The Australian Government provides financial assistance to help individuals and communities to recover from natural disasters. 

15.4, 20.3

NEMA administers the Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements (DRFA) on behalf of the Australian Government, which provides financial assistance to the state and territory governments to assist with the costs of certain disaster relief and recovery assistance measures 

15.4, 20.3

NEMA administer the Australian Government’s disaster recovery payments, including the Australian Government Disaster Recovery Payment and the Disaster Recovery Allowance to support individuals affected by a major disaster. 

15.4, 20.3

Assurance and Learning

For assurance and learning activities, refer directly to the agency for further information.