Sea level rise and inundation mapping

Coastline mapping tools 

Sea-level rise is projected to accelerate over the next century, with research indicating that global mean sea level may rise 18–48 cm by 2050, and 50–140 cm by 2100. Decision-makers faced with the problem of adapting to sea-level rise need the appropriate information to make informed decisions. Two tools have been developed to help identify areas that are likely to be affected by storm events.

Background 

Eyre Peninsula was the first region in South Australia to collect contiguous, precision coastal elevation data via LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) as part of a climate adaptation project led by the Eyre Peninsula Landscape Board with support from Regional Development Australia Eyre Peninsula, the Eyre Peninsula Local Government Association, Department for Environment and Water and SA Water.

LiDAR is a technology which measures surfaces by using laser beams at very high frequencies, and measuring the time it takes for the laser pulse to be returned to the aircraft. The position of the aircraft is tracked by airborne GPS and Inertial Measurement Technology to within a few centimetres, so the distance from the aircraft to the ground can be accurately determined. This information is available for public download on the Geoscience Australia ELVIS platform.

Eyre Peninsula has 2,355km of coastline spanning from the Upper Spencer Gulf to the Great Australian Bight. This required over 3,000 km of flying over 30 hours flight time to map the entire coastline of Eyre Peninsula, and delivered a comprehensive 3D map of the coastline at a vertical accuracy of +/-15cm.

The data has now been modelled and is available as the Coastal Flood Mapping Viewer. This mapping tool covers the entire coastline of Eyre Peninsula, as well as some areas within the Limestone Coast. 

The main goals of the coastal flood maps are to:

  • identify areas that may be vulnerable to coastal flooding at a regional scale;
  • visualise the potential impacts from different sea level rise scenario’s through maps; and
  • inform policy-making and strengthen partnerships in managing coastal hazards.

Related news

More information