More than 700 Governments across the world have already put practices in place after declaring “climate emergency” on their cities and towns, these include Paris and New York and recently added to the list was the Noosa Shire of south- east Queensland, Australia.
Many Australian cities have already been brought under the “climate emergency” radar. Noosa, a coastal shire is in a serious dilemma in notifying residents and house owners that their homes could get flooded in the next 80 years. an estimated 2, 000 properties could get affected from this imminent threat of flooding a direct descendant of climate change.
The latest figures from the Department of Environment warn a sea level rise of 1.1 meters, considered a high-end scenario, threatening a whopping $226 billion cost to the national economy at the end of the century. This would put up to 68,000 homes at risk in Queensland and the same number in New South Wales. In Victoria and South Australia, it would be up to 48,000 homes, up to 30,000 in Western Australia and up to 15,000 in Tasmania.
How will this warning, affect real estate and the economy of Noosa, is a question on everyone’s mind. Noosa shire authorities have decided to take matters in their hand in deciding the trajectory to be taken to warn potential and existing owners. They have also started mapping the maximum risk areas. Councilors say the estimated 2,232 Noosa properties likely to be affected by storm flooding in 80 years’ time could be told directly via rates notices.
Noosa Mayor Tony Wellington said it was “a problem that every coastal council is facing around the world now — and it’s an issue of defend or retreat obviously. What we have to look at is whether it is feasible and possible to defend property, in a worst-case scenario, or whether it is not possible, and what the cost implications are. And then you have to ask whether all residents should be funding for protection of a few properties.
The Mayor also said it was a matter of “buyer beware” and those in low-lying areas ought to know the risks. Others are underplaying the threat saying people who stay on beach side will invest in property as it’s a lifestyle choice. And as opposed to something like a storm, climate change seems distant and benign. The warnings, however, have been dispelled.