Mangroves are protecting about 175,000 Australians from the impacts of natural disasters according to data released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics.
The ABS has just released experimental information on some of the benefits Australia’s oceans provide for the first time and have revealed that mangroves protect about 30 percent of Australia’s coastline, amounting to 85,000 homes around the country, from the ravages of floods and storms.
The National Ocean Account revealed that there was more than one million hectares of mangrove forests and up to three million hectares of seagrass meadows in 2021.
Director of Environment and Satellite Accounts, Jonathan Khoo, said without the benefits that mangroves offer, the cost of protecting the 18,0000km coastline that they cover would be considerable.
“Using means other than mangroves to protect 85,000 homes could cost the community over $200 billion up front and up to $8 billion annually,” said Mr Khoo.
The National Ocean Ecosystem Account is a joint project between the ABS and the Department of Climate Change, Energy, the Environment and Water.
Following the devastation of recent flooding, experts are urging government intervention to drive the cessation of building in areas at risk.
RMIT expert says a conflation of factors is making the property market hard than ever to predict
A leading property academic has described navigating the current Australian housing market ‘like steering a ship through a thick fog while trying to avoid obstacles’.
Lecturer in RMIT’s School of Property Construction and Project Management Dr Woon-Weng Wong said the combination of consecutive interest rate rises aimed at combating high inflation, higher property prices during the pandemic and cost of living pressures such as the end of the fuel excise that occurred this week made it increasingly difficult for those looking to enter or upgrade to find the right path.
“Property prices grew by approximately 25 percent over the pandemic so it’s unsurprising that much of that growth ultimately proved unsustainable and the market is now correcting itself,” Dr Wong says. “Despite the recent softening, the market is still significantly above its long-term trend and there are substantial headwinds in the coming months. Headline inflation is still red hot, and the central bank won’t back down until it reins in these spiralling prices.”
This should be enough to give anyone considering entering the market pause, he says.
“While falling house prices may seem like an ideal situation for those looking to buy, once the high interest rates, taxes and other expenses are considered, the true costs of owning the property are much higher,” Dr Wong says.
“People also must consider time lags in the rate hikes, which many are yet to feel to brunt of. It can take anywhere from 6 to 24 months before an initial change in interest rates eventually flows on to the rest of the economy, so current mortgage holders and prospective home buyers need to take this into account.”