What are likely Climate Change impacts for the MWI NRM region?

What are the likely Climate Change impacts for the MWI NRM region?

  • Main settlements around the region are predominantly in the coastal zone that already has significant climate risk
  • Global sea level rise is estimated at 0.4 to 1.1m by 2100 (IPCC 2014). Sea level rise mapping provided by the Queensland government uses 0.8m by 2100. The potential added risk to the region from sea level rise and existing flood and storm surge is demonstrated by the map below. Inundation Map – this map shows region, towns & flood risk overlays with storm surge erosion prone areas (medium and high).  The map also shows projected sea level rise to 2100 of 0.8 metres.
  • Average annual temperatures for the region are 24oC (maximum) and 17oC (minimum) for the 1995 baseline (IPCC AR5 standard). Downscaled climate projections for the region indicate that annual temperatures will continue to increase:
  • By 2030 26oC (maximum) and 18oC (minimum)
  • by 2070 27oC (maximum) and 20oC (minimum)
  • Annual rainfall is unlikely to change by 2030 and 2070. However, the intensity of ‘extreme’ weather events is projected to increase in the future.
    • The 1995 baseline for a 1:100 year (or 1% probability) extreme rainfall event (rainfall delivered in a 24-hour period) is 460 mm. These events are likely to become a 1:70 year event by 2030 and 1:60 year event by 2050.
    • The 1995 baseline for a 1:100 year extreme temperature event is 41.6oC for the region. Climate projections indicate that these extreme events may occur every 20 years by 2030 and every 6 years by 2050.

Source: RPS 2014. Natural Resource Planning for Climate Change Mackay Whitsunday Isaac. Consultancy Report prepared by RPS Australia East Pty ltd for Reef Catchments Ltd.

Reports completed to support Planning for Climate Change by the Wet Tropics Cluster include: