Sea-level Rise Impacts
Access the Sea Level Calculator here
Although the precise future sea level rise is uncertain, a rise within a range between about 0.2 and 0.8 metres above 1990 levels is projected by the end of this century. The impacts of this rise will be coastland recession, where erosion causes shorelines to retreat inland, and flooding of low-lying coastal regions, including low-lying island nations. As sea level rises, the severity and frequency of extreme events driven by atmospheric pressure, tides and storm surges, will increase. Even small increases in sea level will have a multiplying effect on extreme events - events that previously only happened every few years, by the end of the century, will typically be happening every few days.
Map: Increased frequency of flooding with 0.5m sea-level rise
The ACE Sea-level Rise Impacts project integrates existing data and climate projections relating to sea-level science. It will use statistical techniques to build models that combine data sets on sea-level rise, tides, surges, waves, estuarine flooding and coastal recession.
Currently our web tool combines present information relating to tides, surges and wave set-up (partially) with future projections of sea-level rise at 29 locations around Australia. This is represented in an existing web-based tool (sealevelrise.info) to assist coastal planners in their decision-making and will soon be generally applicable to the whole Australian coastline. An important aspect of this will be the consistent treatment of inherent uncertainties in the data. ACE has developed online training materials to assist planners and policymakers in the use of the web tool.
View: Dr John Hunter discusses providing data for coastal infrastructure planners
The tool is being upgraded to incorporate modelling of storm surges, tropical cyclones, estuarine hydrology and wave set-up and run-up. This statistical information will be presented for users in the form of maps and graphs.
The project also aims to develop a technique to convert probability and frequency assessments into actual risk (i.e. estimated impacts in terms of cost). This will provide users, such as policymakers, planners and asset managers, with additional information to assist in estimating risks of future flooding of coastal assets.
View: Dr Ian Allison (glaciologist) talks about sea-level rise projections for 21st century
Projects and project leader
* Sea-level Rise Impacts: Dr Steve George
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