Higher sea-level calculations push more of Wellington under water

Wellington City Council has unofficially ditched an optimistic sea-level rise scenario in favour of one that could see much of the central city and low-lying suburbs under water.

It comes as a yet-to-be-released vulnerability assessment has been commissioned by Wellington's councils, outside Wellington city, looking at how sea-level rise will affect the entire region.

But Wellington City Council - itself expected to suffer billions of dollars worth of damage and thousands of people displaced - commissioned its own report in 2013 which had a best-case scenario of 0.6 metres of sea-level rise this century.


Photo: Wcc - A 2013 WCC report highlighted the inundation areas, in yellow, for Wellington under 1.5 metres of sea-level rise.

It can now be confirmed the council has all-but ditched that optimistic figure in favour of about 1.5m leading to an exponentially-different outcome as the best-case.

Under the new scenario, also outlined in the 2013 report, areas in line for "inundation" include much of the area around Westpac stadium, swathes through the central city, as well as lower parts of Oriental Bay, Evans Bay, Kilbirnie, Shelly Bay, Seatoun, and the South Coast bays.

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