Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Mapping flooding from sea level rise in Australia

Spatial Source (Australia): The Department of Climate Change will distribute a new mapping tool to help councils identify which areas may be flooded by rising sea levels. The pilot Coastal Inundation Visualisation tool has been developed over the past two years in response to demands for higher resolution information on the risks of sea level rise.

The application will allow council staff to zoom in to any area covered by the map and select a relevant time and sea level rise to see how the area will be affected in the event of a rise. The software will help planners identify safe areas for development, reducing risk and insurance premiums.

The tool will not use any specific climate data, but will simply show what would happen in the case of sea levels rising by a variable amount. It will take into account local factors such as whether the coast is soft and vulnerable to erosion, existing protective structures such as sea walls, and catchment flooding risks from heavy rainfall events.

The department will also release a series of inundation maps for a number of coastal cities that have been sourced from the application. These maps highlight vulnerable areas for a low, medium and high sea-level rise scenario up to the year 2100….

Stephen Codrington shot this aerial image of Port Hacking, in the southern suburbs of Sydney (Australia), Wikimedia Commons, under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 Generic license

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