Flooding

Avalon rock pool in Sydney in stormy weather

With La Niña prolonging the wet season, there is an increased risk of flooding along the north, east and southeast regions.

Two stalagmites in Yonderup Cave, Yanchep, Western Australia

To look inside a stalagmite is to look back in time tens of thousands of years to see how the Earth’s climate patterns have shaped the world we live in today.

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The disasters have come one after another. While they may not be entirely preventable, we can take many practical steps tailored to local needs and conditions to reduce the impacts on our cities.

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The flood zone around Townsville extends for hundreds of kilometres, making monitoring difficult even from the air. But scientists are testing a new satellite method that can peer through the clouds.

Brisbane river flood

Australia's coastal settlements are highly exposed to the impacts of climate change. Climate-resilient urban landscapes that can cope with large amounts of water need to become the new normal.

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In 2017 18.8 million people were displaced by natural disasters, with floods accounting for 8.6 million. Climate change is poised to drive those numbers higher still.

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A global analysis of rainfall and rivers by UNSW engineers has discovered a growing pattern of intense flooding in urban areas coupled with drier soils in rural and farming areas.

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The world’s most extensive study of the impacts of coastal storm fronts in a changing climate has found that rising seas are no longer the only threat.

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Thirty-year weather records from 79 locations across Australia reveal peak downpours during storms are intensifying at warmer temperatures, leading to greater flash flood risks. 

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Dangerous flooding in a future warmer climate may be greater than forecast because of changes to the distribution of rainfall within storms, writes Ashish Sharma and Conrad Wasko.

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