Conference paper
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The International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Fourth Assessment Report (FAR) states that the warming of the climate system is now “unequivocal”, and is “evident from observations of increases in global average air and ocean temperatures, widespread melting of snow and ice and rising global average sea level” (IPCC, 2007). It is also likely that despite current mitigation policies and related sustainable developments, the level of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere will continue to increase over the next few decades. As a result, the global climate system will very likely see changes that exceed those observed over the past century. Over the coming decades, southern Australia is likely to experience continued increases in temperature, changes in rainfall (likely reductions in winter and spring), an increase in daily rainfall intensity but longer dry spells between rainfall events, an increase in evapotranspiration (the combined effects of evaporation and plant transpiration), an increase in very hot days and nights, a reduction in the frequency of frosts and snowfall events, a likely increase in the number of extreme fire danger days, sea level rise and increased frequency and height of storm surge events.

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