Queensland Gov Global Warming Forecast Didn’t Even Mention Floods

I thought it might be worth having a look at the official Queensland government’s official report on climate change, in particular the section on Observed and Projected Climate Change.

What did it have to say about drought? Well, a heck of a lot, actually. Queensland, according to the report, was going to get hotter and drier. Some areas might see a slight increase in rainfall, but the vast majority could expect a significant drop in rainfall. Droughts would get more common.

Report: “drought” mentioned 24 times.

What about floods then? What with all the global warming heating the air up over the oceans, couldn’t Queensland expect more heavy rainfall and flooding? I looked for the page on floods, but there wasn’t one. Looked for the paragraph on it, but again, no sign. Not even a word.

Report: “flood” mentioned zero times.

You have to wonder, if the possibility of a flood didn’t even get a mention in the official Queensland government’s climate change report, how much preparation did they put in to preparing for one?

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18 responses to “Queensland Gov Global Warming Forecast Didn’t Even Mention Floods

  1. Thnx for this. I’ve linked to it at Jo Novas

    Interestingly, there is also this report from only a few months ago..

    Increasing Queensland’s resilience to inland fl ooding in a changing climate:
    Final report on the Inland Flooding Study

    http://www.climatechange.qld.gov.au/pdf/inlandfloodstudy.pdf

    plus some accompanying reports located at http://www.climatechange.qld.gov.au/whatsbeingdone/queensland/inlandfloodingstudy.html

    I wonder which report decision makers were relying on?

    There is also this report…
    http://www.climatechange.qld.gov.au/pdf/regionsummary-seq.pdf

    In it, flood is mentioned on page 10 of 11 thus..

    In contrast to the overall rainfall declines, more intense extreme storm events are expected to cause increases in flooding impacts which could affect infrastructure such as water, sewerage, stormwater, transport and communications.
    The riskiest areas are those closest to the coast which can incur flash flooding, wind damage and considerable structural damage from falling trees, affecting industry, infrastructure and roads. This will increase the cost of insurance to business and
    the community.

    Call me picky, but the floods in Queensland were as a result of sustained rainfall since before xmas. the above paragraph (I believe) refers to sudden heavy downpours.

    What do you think?

    • Baa Humbug, the first report you link to includes this disclaimer near the beginning:

      © State of Queensland 2010
      This document has been prepared with all due diligence and care, based on the best available information at the time of publication. The department holds no responsibility for any errors or omissions within this document.
      Any decisions made by other parties based on this document are solely the responsibility of those parties. Information contained in this document is from a number of sources and, as such, does not necessarily represent government or departmental policy.

      The report makes 12 very specific recommendations, some of which no doubt would be associated with significant costs since issues such as amending building codes are involved. But don’t even think about holding its authors accountable for their advice. They’ve been careful to cover their legal backsides.

  2. Governments are failing to implement good policy because they are listening to the Warmists instead of going to a professional outfit like Accuweather. They actually believe the Warmists’ warming stories and as a result needless deaths occur.

  3. The Greenkeepers of Government don’t use bad F words.
    “Fraud”, “Floods” and “Facts” are frowned upon.
    “Funding”, on the other hand, is a very good word.

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  5. What about the latest State Assessment of climate change?
    http://www.climatechange.qld.gov.au/pdf/climate-change-in-queensland-2010.pdf

    I Quote;
    “Climate change is also likely to affect extreme rainfall in south-east Queensland,” and “a projected decrease in rainfall across most of Queensland, the projected increase in rainfall intensity could result in more flooding events.”

    A little too inconvenient?

  6. Here is an interesting article from the Brisbane Courier Mail March 2010

    WATER managers may increase the storage of Brisbane’s huge Wivenhoe Dam.

    It would not entail raising the dam wall but rather holding more supplies back as drinking water instead of using them for flood mitigation.

    Queensland Water Commission acting executive director Dan Spiller said yesterday it appeared only a 1m or 2m raising of levels would be acceptable, given Brisbane’s history of flooding.

    “We would have to very carefully investigate implications for flooding upstream and downstream, including impacts on Brisbane city if the flood component was altered in any way,” Mr Spiller said.

    The idea of raising the level of Wivenhoe Dam was included in the draft Southeast Queensland Water Strategy released in November last year.

    http://www.couriermail.com.au/news/plan-to-raise-wivenhoe-dam-storage-level-for-drinking-water/story-e6freon6-1225839328569

    Is this an indication of the mindset of the authorities prior to the floods?

  7. You and your readers might find Tim Lambert’s take on this interesting: scienceblogs.com/deltoid

    • So point out another official climate report FROM the Queensland government in the years before 2010 which says to expect freshwater flooding (i.e. not sea level rise flooding) rather than drought.

      • How about 2008 report from Queensland Government: Increasing Queensland’s Resilience to Inland Flooding in a Changing Climate”?

        It took me about 2 min. to find this. First paragraph, first sentence:
        “Flooding causes significant impacts on Queensland communities and the economy—and with our changing
        climate, fl ooding events are likely to become more frequent and more intense. …”

        Index for further reading: http://www.climatechange.qld.gov.au/downloads/index.html

      • Let’s just look at the report you’ve referenced, it only took me about 30 seconds to find these paras:

        Page 30:
        Extreme rainfall
        Extreme rainfall is defined as the amount of rain
        falling in the top one per cent of rainfall days.
        Projections based on 15 climate models and a
        medium emissions (A1B) scenario indicated that
        Cape York can expect up to a four per cent increase
        in extreme rainfall across all seasons, and that
        western Queensland and the Gulf Region can
        expect up to a four per cent increase in summer and
        autumn (CSIRO & BoM 2007).
        Climate change is also likely to affect extreme
        rainfall in south-east Queensland (Abbs et al.
        2007). Projections indicate an increase in two-hour,
        24-hour and 72-hour extreme rainfall events for
        large areas of south-east Queensland, especially
        in the McPherson and Great Dividing ranges, west
        of Brisbane and the Gold Coast. For example, Abbs
        et al. (2007) found that under the A2 emissions
        scenario, extreme rainfall intensity averaged over
        the Gold Coast sub-region is projected to increase
        by 48 per cent for a two-hour event, 16 per cent for
        a 24-hour event and 14 per cent for a 72-hour event
        by 2070. Therefore despite a projected decrease in
        rainfall across most of Queensland, the projected
        increase in rainfall intensity could result in more
        flooding events.

        Page 78
        The QCCCE is also researching an approach to
        managing inland flood risks that takes account of
        the latest climate change science to help plan for
        and manage existing flood risk, as well as residual
        risks resulting from the impacts of climate change.

  8. You could look at their home page

    Partnership on the Inland Flooding Study

    The Inland Flooding Study partnership with the Local Government Association of Queensland External link icon (LGAQ) was designed to improve Queensland’s resilience to extreme flood events due to climate change. Flooding causes significant impacts on Queensland communities and the economy – and with our changing climate, extreme flooding events are likely to become more intense.

    The project was established to recommend options to increase community resilience to extreme flood events by providing:

    1. a recommended climate change factor for use by local councils in future flood studies
    2. specific policy options for improved flood risk management in the Gayndah case study area
    3. recommendations for inclusion in the review of the State Planning Policy 1/03 Mitigating the Adverse Impacts of Flood, Bushfire and Landslide.

    The key outcomes from the Inland Flooding Study were released publicly on 10 November 2010 following extensive consultation with key stakeholders. The study delivers much needed guidance for local councils on planning for increased flood risk from extreme events resulting from climate change.

    As a result, local governments are now better equipped with clearer guidance on how to factor climate change into their flood studies. The study also produced practical examples of how the effects of climate change can be incorporated into planning schemes that will be considered further as part of the review of the State Planning Policy 1/03, scheduled for completion in 2013.

    The final report Increasing Queensland’s Resilience to Inland Flooding in a Changing Climate (PDF, 83K)* is accompanied by two detailed companion reports on how the climate change factor was derived and the policy options from the Gayndah case study area.

    * Policy Options for Improved Flood Risk Management Using the Gayndah Case Study Area (PDF, 3.0M)*
    * Scientific Advisory Group Report (PDF, 392K)*
    * Inland Flooding Study Partnership fact sheet (PDF, 43K)*

  9. Humbug, perhaps you should see what the leader of the Opposition had to say on the matter.

    Time to rethink use of Wivenhoe’s capacity

    March 9, 2010
    Wivenhoe Dam’s true capacity was double that being reported and better management of the storage was needed to limit further waste of taxpayers’ money on grids and desalination, the State Opposition said today.
    LNP water spokesman Jeff Seeney said reports that Wivenhoe was over 90 per cent full were misleading because at ‘100 per cent capacity’ the dam was less than half full.
    Mr Seeney said a 2005 government report showed using just 2 metres extra of Wivenhoe’s storage would add an extra 228,000 megalitres of water and provide an extra ‘no fail’ yield of 31,000 megalitres a year to SEQ’s water supply – equivalent to the total annual yield from a properly functioning Tugun desal plant.
    Built in the late 1970s in response to the 1974 floods that devastated Brisbane, Wivenhoe was constructed to hold not just a large water supply, but also act as a flood buffer to help to manage future flooding in Brisbane.
    Wivenhoe’s ‘full storage level’ was 1.15 million megalitres – only 44 per cent of total capacity of 2.6 million megalitres.
    Mr Seeney said it was time to review management policy so more of the dam could be used for water storage to reduce chances of another water crisis.
    “Obviously the dam needs to maintain the flood buffer for Brisbane and any decision on storing extra water will impact on the effectiveness of the dam’s flood buffer role.
    “But we need to determine whether the balance that was struck in the early 1980s remains appropriate for the situation today. Much has changed since 1980 … Brisbane and Queensland generally have experienced long periods of low rainfall which saw the real possibility of Brisbane running out of water.
    “Since those original decisions were made in 1980, technology has advanced and we are now able to forecast rainfall events far more accurately. Automatic stream flow monitors and advanced models allow for much better decision making in managing any potential floods.”
    Mr Seeney called on the Minister to ensure no water was released from Wivenhoe until a proper review of storage policy was undertaken.
    “It would be absurd to release water from Wivenhoe until all options are thoroughly investigated,” Mr Seeney said.
    “Labor has seriously mismanaged water for many years, brought Brisbane to the brink of running out of water …and blown billions of dollars in a panic on projects that are hideously expensive and grossly inefficient to run. We need to do a lot better.”

  10. “Queensland Gov Global Warming Forecast Didn’t Even Mention Floods”

    “I looked for the page on floods, but there wasn’t one. Looked for the paragraph on it, but again, no sign. Not even a word.”

    “Report: “flood” mentioned zero times”
    *********************************************************.*****

    That’s because you posted a link to only part of the report – specifically chapter 4.

    Here’s the link the the whole report.

    http://www.climatechange.qld.gov.au/pdf/climateqreport/climateqreport.pdf

    If you had linked to the ENTIRE report, you would have seen numerous mentions of flood risk in Queensland.

    I did a word search on “flood” from the entire report, not just the link you provided, and found these. I stopped after a few examples, because it was obvious your claim was completely incorrect, and it wasn’t worth it to keep going…….

    *********************************************************************
    From: Queensland Climate Change Report:

    “Potential impacts to Queensland include: Increased Increased severity of flooding and tropical Cyclones…”

    “Climate change has the potential to significantly hinder or prevent mining activities as a result of decreased water availability and changes in the frequency and severity of extreme climate events, such as tropical storms, cyclones and flooding.”

    “There is also predicted to be increased flooding and an increase in bushfire risk associated with hotter temperatures and drier conditions.”

    “More intense rainfall and flash flooding place bridges and roads at greater risk to wash-outs and damage.”

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