Coastal crisis as climate change bites

July 24, 2023 8:44 am in by

Waves waterfront Winter cropped GBLarge parts of Queenscliff, Point Lonsdale and Barwon Heads could be under water within 17 years, as climate change pushes sea levels to record highs.

New research has found up to 24 per cent of Point Lonsdale and Queenscliff could be inundated by 2040, putting as many as 1300 homes at risk.

Hundreds of additional homes in Barwon Heads, Geelong, Werribee South and Point Cook are also in the firing line, with experts calling for urgent funding to try and mitigate the threat.

Article continues after this ad

The Kompas report, which was commissioned by the Victorian Marine and Coastal Council and Life Saving Victoria, lists 40 Victorian towns and suburbs considered to be most at risk of climate change-related flooding.

Melbourne’s Southbank and Docklands precincts top the list, followed by Golden beach, Lakes Entrance and Point Lonsdale.

Queenscliff is in 13th place, while Barwon Heads comes in at 29.

Geelong is in 35th place, two ahead of Werribee South, while Point Cook is 39th.

The Coastal Council and Life Saving Victoria have asked the Victorian government to establish a future investment fund to help protect coastlines and, in extreme cases, fund the relocation of homes, business and roads to safer areas, according to a report in The Age.

Article continues after this ad

Werribee river keeper John Forrester told the paper the Wyndham area faced losing its beaches altogether, and flooding of the Werribee River posed a threat to the area’s critical vegetable farms.

Life Saving Victoria told The Age that Wye River on the Great Ocean Road was under threat from inundation, as well as its own headquarters in port Melbourne.

The Kompas report was prepared by experts from the University of Melbourne, the Australian National University, the University of Tasmania and environmental consultancy Climate Risk.

Image: Scores of homes in Geelong are likely to be inundated by 2040 as sea levels rise, according to a new report (Geelong Broadcasters)