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World

AFP
February 9, 2018

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Australia tourism industry under climate change threat

SYDNEY: Australia’s multi-billion dollar tourism industry is under increasing threat from climate change with some of the nation’s top natural wonders in the firing line as temperatures and sea levels rise, a study warned on Thursday.

The report by environmental advocacy group the Climate Council said the government needed to do more to reduce carbon emissions harming Australia’s beaches, national parks and the Great Barrier Reef.

Tourism is the nation’s second-largest export industry, valued at Aus$40 billion and employing more than 580,000 people, it said. But popular visitor destinations were at risk, with major cities in coastal areas expected to face more frequent flooding in coming years, while Australia’s "Red Centre" region could experience more than 100 days annually above 35 degrees Celsius by 2030, it found.

"Tourists travel across the globe to see Australia’s remarkable natural wonders. But these icons are in the climate firing line as extreme weather events worsen and sea levels continue to rise," ecologist and report co-author Lesley Hughes said.

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