Of three million properties exposed to riverine flood risk, one third are in just thirty local government areas.
The tragedy and hardship seen in northern New South Wales and southern Queensland can be expected to be repeated in other flood-prone towns and suburbs of Australia without investment in adaptation and mitigation, according to a global leader in climate risk analysis.
Climate Valuation has identified 30 Local Government Areas (LGAs) around Australia with a combined million properties exposed to riverine flooding (see table below).
Climate Valuation has also calculated climate change fuelled riverine flooding is expected to cause a relative loss of property value around Australia of $170 billion by 2050 as buyers adjust for very high insurance costs, a loss equivalent to $45,000 per exposed property.
Dr Karl Mallon, CEO of Climate Valuation said, “Everyone in high flood risk suburbs needs to recognise that they may have to face similar scenarios as those we have seen this week in coastal Queensland and New South Wales,”
“It’s unfair and unacceptable to leave people in harm’s way when we know the high-risk addresses, and we know which can be protected and which will need to be moved. Just as governments have to deal with reducing emissions, they must provide leadership and financial support for communities to prepare for the climate impacts that are here and worsening.”
To assist home buyers Climate Valuation has an online service that allows them to check any address for risks from worsening extreme weather and climate change over the term of a mortgage.
“There is no failure in the insurance industry – this is a failure in the property market if it is allowing vulnerable people to move into vulnerable properties in high-risk locations. Instead of watching properties collapse in value, it would make more sense to invest the equivalent money in adaptation and loss prevention.”
Climate Valuation notes that the Insurance Council of Australia has also said that instead of governments underwriting insurance pools the money should be spent on risk mitigation.
“It is only fair that Australians get access to the information that banks, insurers and governments already have about risk,” said Dr Mallon.
“Planning codes must be changed, building codes need to be upgraded and a massive grants program will be needed to overhaul Australia’s high-risk housing so that it is ready to cope with the reality of climate change.” concluded Dr Mallon.
Climate Valuation provides home buyers and renters the ability to search their property and understand the scale of potential risks using free site checks or obtain more detailed reports at climatevaluation.com.
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All media enquiries:
Claire Maloney | 0431 279 785 | [email protected]
Natasha Slavec | 0420 992 311 | [email protected]
About Climate Valuation:
Climate Valuation is the world’s leading provider of investment-grade physical climate risk analysis on individual properties on a global scale. Our mission is to democratise climate risk information so that governments, banks and the average citizen can make informed decisions about community safety and ﬁnancial wellbeing. We aim to provide a better understanding of how extreme weather and changing climate will aﬀect homes, neighbourhoods and ﬁnancial investments. In doing so, we will help prepare our community for resilience and enable all levels of business and government to tackle the issue of climate change.
Notes to Editors:
- Towns and suburbs in the path of future extreme flooding: Local Government Areas around Australia with the highest number of properties at high risk from Riverine flooding include Brisbane, Gold Coast, Shepparton, Horsham, Wangaratta, Canning, Central Coast and Newcastle. The combined number of exposed properties in the top 30 local government areas is over 1,000,000.
- Investing in adaptation can avoid disaster-driven property devaluation: If Australian governments allocated an average adaptation investment of $45,000 per flood-exposed house, this would be less than the estimated associated loss of property value expected by 2050 if risks go unaddressed.
- Adaptation efforts will need to be nuanced and targeted. Flood risk is unevenly distributed: some homes will remain unaffected, others will require adaptation, others may no longer be habitable, necessitating new forms of government relocation support for affected families.
- Property damage is the tip of the iceberg. Wider economic costs of natural disasters are already estimated to cost Australia an average of $38bn a year. This could rise to as much as $94bn a year by 2060 under a high emissions scenario, according to research undertaken by Deloitte Access Economics for the Australian Business Roundtable on Disaster Resilience and Safer Communities
- Homeowners can now access data that banks, governments and insurers already have. Climate Valuation allows home-owners to bring sophisticated climate modelling and data into the home for the first time and access the kind of analysis used by insurance companies and banks to understand current and future climate vulnerability to extreme weather events for their home and their locality.
Climate Valuation’s address level climate hazard analysis can be accessed via www.climatevaluation.com. Free site checks are available.