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Extreme hotspots: Queensland most exposed to climate change fallout

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Six local government areas in Queensland top the list of the 10 zones in Australia most vulnerable to destructive weather events linked to climate change.

A new study released today by consultancy Climate Risk shows Gold Coast at the top of the list, followed by Brisbane and the Sunshine Coast.

Other Queensland precincts that made the top-10 list are Moreton Bay (6), the Fraser Coast (7) and Mackay (9).

The NSW Central Coast and the northern border area of Tweed placed fifth and eighth respectively, while the only Victoria local government area in the table is fourth-ranked Greater Shepparton. Mandurah in WA rounded up the list on 10th spot.

The analysis looks at local government areas that could be most impacted from riverine flooding, coastal inundation, bushfires, drought-induced subsidence risk and wind threats excluding cyclone.

It takes into account the likely compounding effects of global warming on these events and estimates the likely exposure the areas face from now until 2100.

The total cost of damage, assuming all hazards are insured, is projected to rise by 55% over the same period.

As reported yesterday, Climate Risk Director of Science Karl Mallon told the number of uninsurable properties could see a near-double rise to about 720,000 addresses if global warming continues at its current rate.

The Insurance Council of Australia (ICA) has criticised the report, but Climate Risk sister company XDI says the analysis aims to raise public awareness of the climate risk and encourage mitigation investment.

“We were compelled to release this information because we want to drive action on this issue,” XDI CEO Rohan Hamden said.

“A response requires everyone to play a part in a co-ordinated way – federal and state governments, businesses, insurers and communities. We need a strategic vision for building resilience.

“This analysis provides a solid case for climate resilient investment in any of these locations. Climate impacts will affect the bottom line in the operations of business and supply chain services in high risk areas.”

The full report can be accessed here.