Ocean rises would hit homes but help an­glers

Pilbara News - - Pilbara News - Tom Zaun­mayr

Fish­ing in the Pil­bara could be­come even bet­ter in the next 200 years if the lat­est sea level mod­el­ling by a team of US cli­mate sci­en­tists is any­thing to go by.

Cli­mate Cen­trals’ global map­ping project shows a 4C rise in global tem­per­a­tures would see the ocean swal­low al­most all of Onslow and Port Hed­land, as well as parts of Ex­mouth, Roe­bourne and Wick­ham.

Small sec­tions of Pegs Creek, Bul­garra and Mil­lars Well in Kar­ratha would be in­un­dated as well.

A salt­wa­ter chan­nel would be cut through the mid­dle of the Bur­rup Penin­sula and Cape Lam­bert, cut­ting off Dampier and Point Sam­son.

While all this would un­doubt­edly be good news for an­glers, given the ex­tra struc­ture cre­ated for fish to hide, it would have a se­vere im­pact on in­dus­try and res­i­dences in ev­ery coastal town.

The re­port is based on sea level rises that could hap­pen within 200 to 2000 years if noth­ing is done to curb the cur­rent level of green­house gas emis­sions.

About 10,000 peo­ple would lose their homes, with many more af­fected by the loss of in­dus­try and ma­jor roads.

If emis­sion lev­els are cut and global tem­per­a­tures in­crease by only 2C, the data show a sea level rise of about 4.7m.

Onslow and Port Hed­land would still be in­un­dated and all other Pil­bara coastal com­mu­ni­ties would see at least a mi­nor ef­fect.

If this lesser sea level rise were to oc­cur, about 1500 peo­ple, mostly in Port Hed­land, would stand to lose their homes.

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