“Global warming is happening – 2010 was the equal warmest year on record and the 34th consecutive year with above average global  temperatures. In Australia, 2001-10 was the warmest decade on record and the sixth in a row warmer than the previous one. The consensus among climate scientists is that Australia is already being directly affected by global warming. Climate change will increasingly affect our environment with rising sea levels and sea surface temperatures, changes to rainfall distribution and water availability, and more severe weather events. The Great Barrier Reef, our largest World Heritage Area, with huge environmental, cultural and economic significance to Australians, is threatened by  increasing water temperatures, rising sea levels and ocean acidification. Some 200,000 people are directly dependent on a healthy Reef which generates around $4 billion for our economy. Businesses need certainty so they can get on with making plans for the future. If Australia doesn’t act now……..” READ THE FULL REPORT 

Kingsford Smith Report Autumn 2011

Left(click to enlarge)- Electorate of Kingsford Smith and CSIRO Map of Sydney Basin showing North Botany Bay in the Kingsford Smith electorate as highly vulnerable. According to the previous treasurer of NSW, Port Botany (see bright red), is the backbone of the NSW economy.

In 2006 the Principal Scientist for URS , Matt Coetzee, who oversaw the Sydney Ports Corporation EIS for the expansion had this to say at a conference titled: Critical Transportation Infrastructure in a Global Warming Future:Protecting NSW Seaports and their Hinterland,Working Paper 2,Report on Workshop Held 25th May, 2006, The University of Sydney “Matt spoke specifically on the EIS process for the expansion of Port Botany seaport. He noted that for the purposes of the EIS, spatial and temporal boundaries were tightly defined around the physical
infrastructure and less on deeper connections with other structures. The alternatives considered are most often at the scale of the development (ie alternative structural solutions), and if other scales were examined other alternatives might come into play. This was certainly the case with assessing the alternative to develop Newcastle Port instead of augmenting Port Botany. This was rejected because of unsatisfactory transportation links between Newcastle and Sydney, given that the majority of container trade was sourced from or destined to the Sydney Basin. However from a climate change perspective, the Newcastle option might have more weight. Impacts that are well defined, quantified and certain are most easy to define mitigation measures for and are therefore the ones that are prioritised for attention. Consequently impacts of Climate Change are not usually considered in the EIS process. The EIS process focused on assessing the impact of a development on the environment, not that of the peculiarities of the environment on the development.”
The following has been extracted from the Australian Government Publication “About the House”, September 2008: In 2006, the Insurance Council of Australia assessed the number of Australian addresses within three kilometres of the coast and with baseline elevations below four, five and six metres. It estimated that more than 425,000 Australian addresses are below four metres above mean sea level and within three kilometres of the
current shoreline. …. “The potential impacts on the Australian community arising from sea level rise when combined with the current exposures to inland flooding are therefore likely to be significant,” the Insurance Council states in its submission to the inquiry. “It is in this context that the general insurance industry considers that urgent adaptive measures are required. We submit that the significant implications for the Australian economy that flow from this hazard require significant consideration and treatment.”………. ………………Professor Thom raises a series of pertinent questions in his submission, pointing to low-lying areas in Australia he believes could be at risk. “When will barrages be needed at Port Philip or Botany Bay? When will the very low runway at Sydney Airport need to be elevated?

Leave a Reply