Beach erosion on the Queensland Gold Coast.
Australia is vulnerable to climate change
Australia is likely to become warmer, with less rainfall and more droughts in the south, uncertain rainfall changes in the north, more heatwaves, less snow, more fires, more heavy rainfall events and more intense cyclones.
18 December 2009 | Updated 14 October 2011
Australian average temperatures are projected to rise by 0.6 to 1.5 ºC by 2030 and by 1 to
5 ºC by 2070.
The projected warming of 1 to 2.5 ºC by 2070 is for a low emission scenario (similar to a 500 parts per million CO²-equivalent path).
A high emission scenario (similar to the world’s current emissions path) is projected to result in warming of 2.2 to 5.0 ºC by 2070.
In Canberra, the present annual average of five days with maximum temperatures above 35ºC may rise to seven to 10 days by 2030 and eight to 26 days by 2070.
Warming is projected to be lower near the coast and in Tasmania and higher in central and north-western Australia.
These changes will be felt through an increase in the number of hot days.
In Canberra, for example, the present annual average of five days with maximum temperatures above 35ºC may rise to seven to 10 days by 2030 and eight to 26 days by 2070.