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New report reveals NSW areas most prone to flood risk now and into the future


A comprehensive new analysis has highlighted that several inland towns and tourist hotspots in New South Wales constitute the locations most vulnerable to flooding both presently and in the upcoming thirty years. At the top of the list is Narrabri, situated in the state’s northwest, which holds the premier position for the current flood risk and is projected to remain the most affected suburb in three decades, as revealed by the Groundsure ClimateIndex™ reports provided by InfoTrack.

The top five is completed by Moree in second place, followed by Forbes in the Central West, Walgett to the north, and Moama in the Riverina region. Meanwhile, coastal and inland tourist destinations like Yamba, Grafton, and Port Macquarie also make an appearance, indicating the widespread potential impact on popular holiday spots.

Top 20 NSW suburbs affected by flooding nowTop 20 NSW suburbs affected by flooding in 30 years
15Port Macquarie15Port Macquarie

According to Groundsure CEO Dan Montagnani, their data utilizes “high-resolution topographical data, detailed land cover information, and advanced weather models” to simulate flood depths and extents accurately. He added that their “comprehensive evaluation, provided by Royal HaskoningDHV’s division Twinn, encompasses various scenarios, including surface water, river, and tidal flooding, and integrates state-of-the-art climate models to provide flood risk assessments in the context of climate change.”

The list of suburbs revealed does not show any dramatic variations in risk over thirty years, suggesting the immutable nature of flood risk dictated by topography. Grafton, however, is seen as marginally more at risk in the future, rising from thirteenth to twelfth most impacted, swapping places with Condobolin.

“The minimal variation between current and future flooding impact rankings can be attributed to the inherent nature of flood risk, which is primarily governed by topography. There is very little addition of new high-risk areas,” reflected Mr Montagnani on the findings.

Homebuyers, particularly in New South Wales, are now encouraged to leverage the ClimateIndex™ reports, a novel tool that not only assesses flooding but also factors such as bushfires and coastal erosion. John Ahern, Global Head of Property at InfoTrack, highlighted the individualized nature of the reports that “allow property lawyers and conveyancers to better inform their buyers,” which is increasingly vital given the ongoing risk of flooding in many parts of Australia.

The data points towards an urgent need for prospective homeowners to consider the long-term risks associated with their property investments, especially in areas identified as being particularly susceptible to flooding. Those interested can search a property address via InfoTrackGO to obtain a ClimateIndexTM report specifically for that residence, aiding in informed decision-making.


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