Coastal Plans; Sea Level Rise Must Rely on Research

Article excerpt

RECENTLY both the Victorian and New South Wales governments have amended their coastal plans.

These coastal plans involve development restrictions which pertain to expected sea level rise by the year 2100.

Victoria has reduced the threshold below which development is prohibited from one metre down to 200mm above sea level for existing seaside communities.

NSW has removed all requirements for seaside councils to comply with the recommendations of the coastal plan.

Both governments use IPCC AR4 2007 sea level projections to justify their amendments.

The projections in AR4 were based on the science up to 2003 and came with a caveat that the estimate of 59cm by 2100 did not include the uncertainties in carbon cycle feedbacks nor the full effects of changes in ice sheet flow atherefore the upper values of the ranges are not to be considered the upper bounds for sea level risea.

As part of the Queensland government's six-month plan, July to December 2012, under the heading Improve Infrastructure, we read that one of the goals is to commence work to amend the Queensland coastal plan. …