Climate change facts

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Climate change on the rocks – did you know ...

Dr. Eberhard Faust, Head of Research: Climate Risks and Natural Hazards

Did you know…
... that the sea level in Sydney will rise more than on the coast of Iceland?

Global warming is causing the sea level to rise – even as a result of thermal expansion of the water. However, the extent of the rise varies in different ocean regions and at the coasts, as a result of the ocean currents, vertical land movements, and other factors. The sea level around Iceland will only rise about half as much as in Sydney!

... that the melting of the ice in the Arctic Ocean will not cause the sea level to rise at all?

The reason: Ice masses floating in water are in a state of equilibrium with the surrounding fluid, technically termed buoyant stability. The effect of this can be observed when having a drink “on the rocks”. When the ice cubes melt, the level of the fluid in the glass does not change – unless you take a sip of course.

... that the number of tropical cyclones could reduce considerably?

Current climate models show that the number of cyclones occurring in the northeast of Australia could fall by 15% to 35% due to climate change. The reduction will be in storms of moderate to medium intensity. The number of very intense storms, on the other hand, will increase, and along with it, the risk for insurers.

... that the frequency of extreme droughts in Australia could increase by one and a half times by the end of the 21st century?

This result of current climate models, referring to events in which pre- cipitation is two standard deviations below the average, will present major challenges to the agricultural sector and water supplies.

... that the number of days a year in Adelaide with daily top temperatures of 35°C or more may increase from the current 20 to asmuchas47bythe end of this century?

Current climate models project increases in other cities, such as Cairns, from 3 to 48 such days, or Perth from 28 to 63.

... that the number of days of extreme bushfire danger in southern and eastern Australia could almost triple by the end of the century?

Climate models driven by the most extreme scenario recognised in the IPCC report have produced this prognosis. The scenario assumes the continuation of the current path of emission levels.


Natural hazards in Australia and New Zealand

NATHAN Risk Suite - Munich Re

Floods, cyclones, hailstorms, bushfires, earthquakes and volcanic eruptions – get a detailed overview of the science of natural hazards and their financial impacts.

Understanding risk

NATHAN Risk Suite - Munich Re

Risk is the product of (the probability of) a hazard and its adverse consequences. See how it affects your business.


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