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Natural hazards and the risks they pose in south-east Queensland.



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NATURAL HAZARDS AND THE RISKS THEY POSE IN SOUTH-EAST QUEENSLAND

The risks facing South-East Queenslanders from natural hazards have been spelt out in the latest report from AGSO - Geoscience Australia. 8 August 2001

8 August 2001            01/357

NATURAL HAZARDS AND THE RISKS THEY POSE IN SOUTH-EAST QUEENSLAND

The risks facing South-East Queenslanders from natural hazards have been spelt out in the latest report from AGSO - Geoscience Australia.

The report, the third in a series assessing the vulnerability of Queensland communities to natural hazards, was released today in Brisbane by Dr Wally Johnson, Chief of Geoscience Australia's Urban Geoscience Division.

Speaking from Canberra, Warren Entsch, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Industry, Science and Resources, welcomed the report.  "One of the best ways to be prepared for natural disasters is to make sure that people are aware of the hazards that pose a risk in their community," Mr Entsch said.

The report looks at the disaster history of South-East Queensland and assesses the risk to the community of tropical cyclones, east coast lows or 'winter cyclones', floods, earthquakes, landslides, severe thunderstorms, heatwaves and bushfires.

The analysis of risk involved assessing the levels of hazard in the South East Queensland region, developing an understanding of the vulnerability of the elements that are at risk within the community, and synthesising a range of event scenarios.  A comprehensive building database was then used to generate damage assessments for the various scenarios.

"History provides a clear pointer to what can happen in the future,” Mr Entsch said.  "People who live in South-East Queensland are vulnerable to a range of hazards, such as cyclones and heavy rainfalls, and we must not be complacent.

"Nothing we do can prevent these natural hazards.  But governments can reduce their impact by identifying potential risks and vulnerable areas, and recommending disaster-mitigation measures such as modifications to building codes.

"The information in the report is a vital planning tool for local authorities," Mr Entsch said. 

"It will help local councils, engineers, planners and emergency services personnel to develop appropriate strategies for dealing with natural hazards and disasters when they do occur.”

AGSO - Geoscience Australia worked closely with the Bureau of Meteorology, the Queensland Department of Emergency Services and the local councils of Brisbane City, Caboolture, Gold Coast City, Ipswich City, Logan City, Pine Rivers, Redcliffe, and Redland to undertake the study.

Copies of the full report and a companion booklet are available from the Geoscience Australia Sales Centre, GPO Box 378, Canberra, ACT, 2601, Australia, phone 02 6249 9519, or fax 02 6249 9982 or sales@agso.gov.au. 

CMR407-01

Further information:

Greg Doolan, Mr Entsch's Office: 0418 213 243

Marion Leiba, AGSO - Geoscience Australia, 02 6249 9355 or 0417 401 415 Return to previous page