News

Phil Koberberg Talks the Environment and More


29 May 2008

Michel Chaaya and Shane Geha always ensure that the final year course on Project Planning and Tendering is informative and topical. This year they were able to arrange for former NSW Minister Phil Koberberg to address the class.

Mr Phil Koperberg AO spoke of his experiences as a minister of the NSW government and of his time as the NSW Fire Commissioner. He spoke about the most recent round of far-reaching planning reforms to the E.P. & A. Act currently before parliament. Phil also spoke of the importance of climate change and how it will relate to both the natural and built environments for the next wave of engineers and project managers.

The speech was very entertaining peppered with anecdotes such as one funny experience relating to how Mr Koperberg overcamehis fear of flying. The speech was also deeply personal and drew a perfect rapport with the enraptured audience of students and staff including the Head of School Professor Kim Rasmussen, who gave a vote of thanks to Mr Koperberg.


About Phil Koperberg, MP (AO, AFSM, BEM)

  • Philip Christian Koperberg is the New South Wales former Minister for Climate Change, Environment and Water, and the former Commissioner of the New South Wales Rural Fire Service (RFS) in Australia.
  • In September 1997 he was appointed the RFS Commissioner when the Service was formed under the Rural Fires Act. Before this he had been Director-General of the NSW Bush Fire Service from May 1990.
  • An expert in risk and crisis management, Phil Koperberg was the overall emergency controller during the 2001 Christmas/New Year fires, when Australia faced its longest and most intense bush fire fighting campaign. In 1994 Phil Koperberg was also the overall emergency controller, as fire-fighters battled to control over 800 NSW fires covering in excess of 800,000 hectares. In 1999, his expertise was again called upon during the severe hail storms which damaged more than 30,000 properties.
  • In March 2007 he was elected to the NSW State parliament (the seat of Blue Mountains) and appointed to the ministry (Minister for Climate Change, Environment and Water).

Phil Koperberg answering questions as Shane Geha looks on
Phil Koperberg answering questions as Shane Geha looks on

Phil Koperberg is presented with a small gift from Prof Kim Rasmussen
Phil Koperberg is presented with a small gift from Prof Kim Rasmussen