Climate change an 'undeniable' issue

Every decade three metres of NSW's sandy coastline will disappear because of erosion.
Every decade three metres of NSW's sandy coastline will disappear because of erosion.

EVERY decade three metres of NSW's sandy coastline will disappear because of erosion.

And, according to Associate Professor Graham Jones from Southern Cross University's School of Environmental Science and Management, that's a conservative estimate.

“Some years we might lose 10 metres of sand. Some years it might be none,” he said.

“When you think about how much infrastructure we have along our coastline here, that is going to have a huge impact.”

Assoc Prof Jones was speakingafter yesterday's release of the Climate Commission's report, The Critical Decade.

He said the new report showed climate change was now undeniable.

“The evidence is now over-whelming,” he said.

“Where do we go from here? That's the question. The situation is getting more severe, so if we can't convince our politicians now that something needs to be done, wenever will.”

Tony Gleeson, from the Ballina Climate Action Network, said the report was timely because it highlighted the issues.

“We really need to get our skates on,” he said.

“Locally we're encouraging people to get involved and we have a workshop in Ballina on Wednesday night for the 20,000 Conversations imitative, part of the 100 per centrenewable energy campaign.”

The workshop will be held in Ballina High School's library at 7pm.

Assoc Prof Jones agreed that local residents should be involved, and said there would be more rainfall, more floods and more severe weather on the Northern Rivers if nothing was done.

He also said sea level rise was one of the biggest challenges facing this region.

“We've got sea levels rising by about 3.4mm a year, which doesn't seem like much, but you have to multiply that by 100 for an idea of what you will see horizontally,” he said.

The Climate Commission's report, written by Will Steffen, aims to provide up-to-date information on the science of climate change and its implications.

“Australia is vulnerable to the risks posed by sea-level rise,” he writes.

Topics:  climate change erosion new south wales southern cross university

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