A NEW report shows Australian beaches could be washed away within the next 100 years.
Without immediate climate action, Australia’s pristine coastline, iconic beaches and tourism hotspots could be washed away.
Coastal Risk Australia illustrates the severity of rising seas based on the latest scientific modelling, via an interactive web map that allows the public to search how rising sea levels may encroach on their community.
The interactive website was developed in partnership between FrontierSI and NGIS Australia and is based on the recent climate change report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).
The website incorporates significant advancements in modelling the behaviour of ice sheets, indicating that by 2100 global sea levels could increase by 0.84m – and the unlikely potential worst case of sea levels rising by 2m by 2100 and 5m by 2150.
CEO of FrontierSI, Graeme Kernich, acknowledges the significant challenges Australia is facing.
“Coastal Risk Australia tool aims to place scientific modelling into the hands of the people so they can see for themselves how the areas they live in could be impacted in the future by climate change,” said Mr Kernich.
The interactive site shows that along the Bass Coast, sea levels could reach up to Inverloch-Venus Bay Road and into Inverloch town by 2100 and worsening by 2150.
IPCC modelling has shown with high confidence that sea levels will rise for centuries due to continuing deep ocean warming and ice sheet melt, and will remain elevated for thousands of years.
Over the next 2000 years, global mean sea level will rise two to six metres if limited to two degrees Celsius of warming, and 19 to 22 metres with five degrees Celsius of warming over subsequent millennia.
Sea level rise scenarios included in the report include:
• Very low emission scenario (0.28 – 0.55m sea level rise by 2100).
• Low emission scenario (0.32 – 0.62m sea level rise by 2100).
• Intermediate emission scenario (0.44 – 0.76m sea level rise by 2100).
• High emission scenario (0.63 – 1.01m sea level rise by 2100).
Executive director at NGIS Australia, Nathan Eaton said sea levels rising will soon be unavoidable and, based on the IPCC report, will continue to rise for future generations.
“By 2050, sea level change of 15 to 30cm will be unavoidable, this means that coastal flooding will become worse during storm surges. Scenarios beyond 2050, however, become increasingly sensitive to choices and actions made by global communities to reduce emissions,” said Mr Eaton.
Visit coastalrisk.com.au for more information.