Student researcher

Tom Fitzgerald Research Leader

By its very nature the coast is a natural edge in a constant state of flux. The most visible aspects of this change may be seen through the action of extreme events (hazards) such as storms, cyclones and concomitant storm surges, flooding, erosion etc. By themselves, these extreme events may not be so harmful, however humans have chosen, and continue to choose, to live by the coast; and in doing  so  put  themselves in harm’s way (exposure). It is this ever-growing juxtaposition of natural hazards and human activity and settlement at the coast that creates risks.

The primary question being addressed in this project is: What is [un] acceptable risk in a changing coastal zone?

 Following from this are the Secondary questions:

  • What does the risk governance framework for managing coastal hazards and adapting to climate change at Collaroy-Narrabeen (NSW) look like? How does that compare to the Kapiti Coast (NZ)?
  • How are coastal adaptation decisions made now?
  • Who are the decision-makers? What is the role of the community in decision- making, and when?
  •  How do perceptions of risk acceptability/tolerability affect adaptation choice when managing coastal hazards?