Extreme events

The cost of replacing essential infrastructure damaged by disasters will reach an estimated $17 billion in the next 35 years. It is essential we systematically build disaster resilience in Australia.

Sun reflecting off a hand rail in the city.

2015 was the world's hottest year ever by a long shot. But what drove the record temperatures, and what role did climate change play?

Man in orange coat looking at flame

A bushfire is one of the most terrifying natural phenomena that anyone is likely to experience in Australia. To be caught in a bushfire is to witness a true hell on earth — conditions hot enough to melt metal, heat fluxes that literally vaporise vegetation, and smoke plumes so dense they turn day into night.

A sign with fire danger ratings

The ‘fire behaviour triangle’ – topography, weather and fuel – represents the three key factors that influence how a bushfire behaves. Weaken any one of these and a bushfire becomes more manageable.

Two people in high visibility clothing standing in burnt wreckage

Building bushfire resilience to preserve life and property requires consideration of buildings, individuals, communities and the environment.

A small house surrounded and engulfed by flames

Designing houses to withstand bushfire is about balancing not only the bushfire resilience of the house but also the aesthetic qualities and functionality. Researchers have helped develop a new standard with the housing industry for bushfire-proofing steel framed houses.

Croc awaits rain

Crocodiles stuck in the mud - researchers are discovering that native species have their limits when it comes to Australia's extreme weather, particularly during El Niño.

Bushfires and heatwaves will be more common

There is a strong interest in understanding the changing odds of extreme weather events as the underlying climate system changes. Scientists have examined extreme weather events of 2014 to see if they can be attributed to climate change.

A team looking at the effect of a warming climate on the frequency and severity of La Niña events has found they are likely to be twice as frequent in future.