Human Induced Climate Change Experiment

Home | Resources | Archives |Contact Us

Australia — Island at Risk from Climate Change

Since Australia has more coastline relative to land mass, the impact of global warming is more pressing.


Adapting to climate change



It is important that Australia reduce its carbon pollution to minimise the severity of climate change. However, because some greenhouse gases stay in the atmosphere for about 100 years after they are first emitted, there will be some changes that cannot be avoided due to past and inevitable future global emissions.

The Australian Government’s position paper, Adapting to Climate Change in Australia, sets out the Government’s vision for adapting to the impacts of climate change and proposes practical steps to realise that vision.

It outlines the Australian Government’s role in adaptation, which includes building community resilience and establishing the right conditions for people to adapt; taking climate change into account in the management of Commonwealth assets and programs; providing sound scientific information; and leading national reform.

The position paper identifies six national priority areas for action: water, coasts, infrastructure, natural ecosystems, natural disaster management, and agriculture.

Managing the risks for Australia

Scientists tell us that the carbon pollution we have already put in the atmosphere is causing unavoidable changes in our climate. These changes will have consequences in Australia such as more frequent and more extreme weather events including heatwaves, storms, cyclones and bushfires; a continued decline in rainfall in southern Australia; and higher temperatures leading to decreases in water supplies. Australia must take action now to prepare for these impacts. This includes changing the way buildings and infrastructure are designed, diversifying the water supplies in our cities and improving our water use, rethinking the way we develop vulnerable coastal areas, or planting more drought-tolerant crops.

The decisions governments make today about infrastructure, health, water management, agriculture, biodiversity and housing will have lasting consequences for our children and future generations. By considering the future climate when making these decisions Australia will be in a better position to deal with the unavoidable impacts of climate changes.

Making informed decisions

Quality scientific research into climate change is helping Australia gain more detailed information on the causes, nature and consequences of climate change. It is helping governments, businesses and communities develop effective strategies to reduce emissions and adapt to changes in our climate. Research will give Australia the knowledge to make the right decisions for our new low-carbon economy. Australian scientists are making an important contribution to building global understanding of the causes of climate change and its impacts.

The Australian Government is supporting a broad range of climate change science research activities through our $31 million Australian Climate Change Science Program. The research is helping us to better understand global and regional climate change and its potential impact on Australia’s natural and managed systems.

The government is adopting a new National Framework for Climate Change Science to set climate change research priorities over the next decade and identify the people and infrastructure Australia needs to meet our future science requirements. We are also investing $387 million to further enhance our research in marine and climate science through the Marine and Climate Super Science Initiative, by funding high performance computing, new observing systems, and replacing key facilities.

Helping Australia adapt

With funding of up to $126 million, the Australian Government’s up to $126 million Climate Change Adaptation Program is helping Australians to better understand and manage risks linked to the carbon pollution already in our atmosphere and to take advantage of potential opportunities.

A National Climate Change Adaptation Research Facility and associated research networks are generating the information Australians need to manage climate change risks in critical areas such as water resources, health, emergency management and primary industries.

The Government is also helping to build the professional skills Australians need to plan for and respond to climate change risks. The Government is investing $12.9 billion to secure Australia’s water supply in the single largest investment in climate change adaptation: Water for the Future. Scientists predict climate change will reduce the amount of rainfall in parts of Australia—particularly in southern areas. Water for the Future focuses on four national priorities: taking action on climate change, using water wisely, securing our water supplies, and supporting healthy rivers and wetlands. Part of the funding is being provided for alternative water supplies in our major cities and to improve irrigation efficiency in areas such as the Murray Darling Basin.

Australian farmers are being supported as they adapt to climate change through Australia’s Farming Futures program which will improve the ability of primary producers to respond to climate change and manage their emissions.

Australia’s Coasts and Climate Change

The Australian Government recognises the coastal zone as a priority area for adaptation action. The Caring for our Coasts commitment is supporting our coastal communities prepare for and adapt to the impacts of climate change, including the national coastal risk assessment.

The first pass assessment, Climate Change Risks to Australia’s Coasts, outlines the extent of the risk to coastal ecosystems, infrastructure and settlements. Recognising the risks to coastal lands and assets are large and will substantially increase into the future, the Australian Government hosted the National Climate Change Forum: Adaptation Priorities for Australia’s Coast in early 2010. The Forum report identified key issues in developing a national coastal adaptation agenda.

A Coasts and Climate Change Council was established in late 2009 to engage with communities and stakeholders and to advise the Government on key issues. The Council has released its report to Minister Combet.

This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Post a comment or leave a trackback: Trackback URL.

Post a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.

  • RSS Membrane Domain

    • Glacier Breakup
      A NASA study published in the journal Science found a glacier in Greenland broke apart. “The consequences will be felt for decades to come.” “North Greenland glaciers are changing rapidly,” said lead author Jeremie Mouginot, an assistant researcher in the Department of Earth System Science at the University of California, Irvine. “The shape and dynamics […]
    • Climate Change Health Hazard
      Physicians For Social Responsibility report: High in the Earth’s atmosphere, naturally occurring ozone is essential to protecting life on Earth from the harmful ultraviolet rays of the sun. However, here on Earth’s surface, ground-level ozone is a harmful pollutant. Source of Ozone: Ground-level ozone is formed when two major classes of air pollutants — nitrogen […]
    • Disappearing Islands
      By Daniel Brouse THE MARSHALL ISLANDS — If your home is going underwater, you have no doubt about human induced climate change. This is the case for Bikini islanders. In the 1940’s, Bikini island was used for atomic bomb tests. The United States conducted at least 23 nuclear tests including the Bravo hydrogen bomb (the […]
  • RSS Global Warming

    • How carbon markets are driving deeper, faster pollution cuts in Paris climate pledges
      By Alex HanafiAmong the 170+ countries that have submitted their carbon-cutting plans — known as Intended Nationally Determined Contributions, or “INDCs” — more than half have either stated their intention to use international carbon markets to tackle carbon pollution, or are already employing them domestically. Image source: cropped INDC map from IETA's INDC Tracker With only […]
    • 2015 Brings Momentum for the Louisiana Coast
      By Emily Guidry Schatzel, Senior Communications Manager, Mississippi River Delta Restoration, National Wildlife Federation Louisiana’s Mississippi River Delta is a region in dire need of comprehensive restoration. We all know the harrowing statistic facing coastal Louisiana: every hour, a football field of land vanishes off the coast. According to historical averages, Louisiana loses 16 to 25 square miles […]
    • California Market at Three: All Grown Up and Thriving
      By Jonathan CamuzeauxThis post was co-authored by Jonathan Camuzeaux and Derek Walker. As we pointed out in August, no news is good news when it comes to California’s cap-and-trade quarterly allowance auctions, which have been running effectively and without hiccups since November 2012. That’s right, last Tuesday’s auction marks the three-year anniversary of the program’s […]
  • RSS State Of The Climate

    • October 2015 National Overview
      The October contiguous U.S. average temperature was 57.4 degrees F, 3.2 degrees F above the 20th century average.The precipitation total was 2.75 inches, 0.59 inches above average.
    • October 2015 Global Analysis
      The combined average temperature over global land and ocean surfaces for October was 0.98 degrees C (1.76 degrees F) above the 20th century average of 15.5 degrees C (59.9 degrees F).
    • October 2015 Regional Analysis
      October temperature anomalies relative to their 1910-2000 mean: North America, +1.52 deg C; South America, +1.00 deg C; Europe, +0.56 deg C; Africa, +1.53 deg C; Asia, +0.95 deg C; Oceania, +2.70 deg C.
  • RSS Global Climate Change – Vital Signs of the Planet – News RSS Feed

    • 2015 and 1997 El Niños: Déjà vu or something new?
      El Niño: An unusually warm pool of water off the west coast of South America, usually arriving around Christmas time, linked with complex, large-scale interactions between the atmosphere and ocean in the Pacific. If you live anywhere El Niño has important impacts, you've heard forecasters say this year's event looks just like the monster El […]
  • RSS Natural Hazards

  • Archives

  • Archives