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Rising sea-levels could see Southbank underwater

05 May 2016

Rising sea-levels could see Southbank underwater Image

Rising sea-levels could see Southbank underwater

Parts of Southbank could be underwater by 2100 according to new climate change modelling released last month.

The Coastal Risk Australia website allows users to see how rising sea levels could affect different parts of Australia by 2100, based on findings from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

The website looks at three different scenarios ranging from sea level rise of 0.44 metres (low), 0.54 metres (medium) and 0.74 metres (high).

According to the website, if the sea rises by 0.74 metres by 2100, at high tide we would see much of Southbank inundated.

Much of the future Fishermans Bend precinct of Montague nearest to the light rail line would also be under water, while interestingly, the Power St loop entrance to CityLink would also affected.

Surprisingly, the forecast suggests that Queensbridge Square and much of Southbank Promenade will be relatively unaffected by rising sea levels.

It’s anticipated only limited sections of the river precinct will be affected, including sections of South Wharf Promenade and the immediate area along the river’s banks.

While the launch of the Coastal Risk Australia website last month has drawn attention to the issue of rising sea levels in waterfront areas such as Southbank, steps are being taken to lessen the impact.

It’s clearly evident from this projection that the issue rest with Southbank’s drainage capacity and, as recently as March, the City of Melbourne in partnership with Melbourne Water endorsed its latest flood management strategy.

The strategy includes actions, which are expected to be implemented between now and 2021.

Such actions include upgrades to flood and drainage infrastructure and managing new developments.

Since 2008, the State Government has required authorities to plan for sea level rise of no less than 0.8 metres.

However, given many of Southbank’s buildings were constructed prior to 2008, we could see some buildings affected by rising sea levels, while their neighbours remain dry.

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