New homes could be built in flood risk zones, town planners warn


Karl Mallon, chief govt of Local weather Valuation, which undertakes threat evaluation for house consumers and banks, mentioned many present flood maps have been primarily based on long-term historic information even because the local weather had modified in latest a long time.

He highlighted the flood threat in components of Gippsland and in Shepparton, saying a lot of the latter had already been inbuilt a flood zone.

Victorian experts are trying to avoid a repeat of the Lismore flood devastation.

Victorian specialists try to keep away from a repeat of the Lismore flood devastation.Credit score:Dan Pele

“We might see someplace like Shepparton being a Lismore within the ready,” he mentioned.

“Both you’re going to do one thing at a municipal stage to guard the city from floodwaters, otherwise you want a long-term technique to encourage planning in low-risk areas.”


Shepparton’s one-in-100-year flood mapping was up to date earlier this yr, whereas East Gippsland Shire Council says work is constant to grasp the character and extent of local weather change’s future impacts.

Mallon mentioned many homebuyers have been already checking pure hazard threat earlier than deciding whether or not to purchase a house.

McMillan declined to establish cities or suburbs the place mapping points are placing properties in danger.

However some dangers are already identified. In Port Fairy, in western Victoria, the native Moyne Shire is already planning for sea stage rise, and the College of NSW undertook a undertaking to map sea stage rise and coastal hazard.


The outcomes of the examine aren’t publicly obtainable, some extent highlighted in a rezoning software for 85 new properties within the city, seen by The Age, which says exterior stakeholders can’t use the coastal examine for flood threat planning.

Elsewhere, a coastal hazard evaluation for Port Phillip Bay is underneath method, as low-lying areas could possibly be in danger from rising sea ranges, in a course of that has already taken greater than three years.

The planning institute is looking on the winner of the state election to guide a constant method to mapping flood threat throughout the state, just like a course of undertaken with bushfire hazard threat within the wake of the Black Saturday fires.

“The entire system must be built-in, so anybody making a choice about the place new homes ought to go and the place [they] must be constructed has details about the place the flood threat is,” McMillan mentioned.

This info could be included within the planning scheme and will additionally inform the position of latest roads and different infrastructure.

“We’ve seen what has been taking place in NSW and there is a chance to be on the entrance foot with this,” she mentioned.

Lismore’s floods are a warning bell for planners trying to avoid a similar event in Victoria.

Lismore’s floods are a warning bell for planners attempting to keep away from the same occasion in Victoria.Credit score:Natalie Grono

Local weather Council analysis director Simon Bradshaw mentioned local weather change, pushed by the burning of coal, oil and fuel, means a hotter ambiance that may maintain extra moisture and has extra power for storms that generate lots of rain, rising the chance of floods.

“Except we make far more severe cuts in emissions … we shall be setting communities and households up for eventualities that shall be very laborious to adapt to,” he mentioned, including some communities could have to relocate.

“It means doing all the things doable to help individuals’s want to stay the place they’re, engaged on constructing resilience, so we minimise pressured displacements.”

A Victorian authorities spokesperson mentioned native councils have been accountable for updating flood mapping to make sure they recognized areas vulnerable to flooding.

“Councils are finest positioned to make these choices, in session with the related water authority, which might present steerage round inundation patterns particular to their space,” the spokesperson mentioned.

“We offer funding to help the preparation of some flood research and the instruments to assist councils handle and reply to native flood dangers.”

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