10 Built environment | 3.6 Increased sea levels
State of the Environment 2011 Committee. Australia state of the environment 2011.
Independent report to the Australian Government Minister for Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities.
Canberra: DSEWPaC, 2011.
10 Built environment
Climate change is expected to lead to increases in sea level, with projections of a sea level rise of up to 1.1 metres by 2100. (This is the 'high' scenario. The 'low' scenario is for a rise of 0.5 metres, and the 'medium' scenario is for a rise of 0.8 metres.) Such a sea level rise, with an allowance included for a modelled high-tide event, could potentially expose 157 000–247 600 existing residential buildings to inundation; the 2008 replacement value of these buildings is estimated at $41–63 billion.37
Aerial view of St Huberts Island canal estate, connected to the Tasman Sea via Broken Bay, Central Coast, New South Wales
Photo by Skyepics
|Very high impact||High impact||Low impact||Very low impact||in grade||in trend|
|Urban footprint||Increasing population is placing significant pressures on the land required for Australian cities, including agricultural land and other land of significant environmental value.|
|Traffic||Traffic congestion will continue to increase in major cities as a result of population and economic growth, unless recent trends of reduced car use continue.|
|Pollution||Although pollution levels in Australia's cities are generally satisfactory, measures may not be in place to mitigate increased emissions resulting from population and economic growth.|
|Consumption||Increasing consumption continues to place pressure on environmental resources, although there is some evidence that increases in the use of water and energy may be slowing. Waste generation, however, is continuing to grow faster than population|
|Extreme climate events||Climate change is likely to lead to an increasing frequency of extreme weather events that affect the built environment|
|Changes in sea levels||Climate change is likely to lead to higher sea levels, leading to increased inundation of coastal areas in the built environment|
|Recent trends||Improving||Stable||Confidence||Adequate high-quality evidence and high level of consensus|
|Deteriorating||Unclear||Limited evidence or limited consensus|
|Evidence and consensus too low to make an assessment|
|Grades||Very low impact: The pressure has a negligible impact on the livability and efficiency of the built environment.|
|Low impact: The pressure has a limited impact on some dimensions of the livability and efficiency of the built environment.|
|High impact: The pressure has a significant impact on some dimensions of the livability and efficiency of the built environment.|
|Very high impact: The pressure has a negligible impact on the livability and efficiency of the built environment.|