Jonathan Nott

Jonathan Nott
James Cook University · Centre for Tropical Environmental and Sustainability Science

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91
Publications
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3,726
Citations
Citations since 2017
3 Research Items
1058 Citations
2017201820192020202120222023050100150200
2017201820192020202120222023050100150200
2017201820192020202120222023050100150200
2017201820192020202120222023050100150200

Publications

Publications (91)
Article
Slaymaker et al. (2021) argue that geomorphology is poorly known and has little influence outside its practitioners and therefore should be recast as both a geoscience and a landscape science. The only evidence they evince for the claim about the lack of influence of geomorphology is that it is not evident in the publications from international env...
Article
The processes resulting in the formation of a coarse‐grained sand beach ridge plain at Cowley Beach, north‐east Australia have been questioned by Tamura et al. (2017). These authors now acknowledge the conclusions by Nott et al. (2009) and Nott (2014) that the dominant depositional mechanisms here are waves and inundations generated during tropical...
Article
Luminescence chronologies for two new slackwater flood deposit (SWD) sites (Broken River northeast Queensland and Ord River northwestern Western Australia) are presented and these along with other SWD chronologies from the same regions are compared with recently developed high resolution, isotope tropical cyclones (TC) records. Heightened TC activi...
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Full-text available
The majority of risk assessments of tropical cyclone storm surge and inundations are based on the generation of synthetic times series from short historical records. The accuracy of these synthetic time series in terms of the frequency of the most extreme magnitude events is difficult to test using this methodology alone. Comparisons with other app...
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Full-text available
Accurate seasonal and decadal predictions of tropical cyclone activity are essential for the development of mitigation strategies for the 2.7 billion residents living within cyclone prone regions. The traditional indices (SOI and various SST indices) have fallen short in recent years as seasonal predictors within the Australian region. The short le...
Chapter
Prehistoric records of tropical-cyclone (TC)-generated storm surges and marine inundations occur in the form of ridges of coral rubble, sand, shell, sand and shell, and pumice and barrier washover deposits. As yet, such records have not been identified beyond approximately 7,000. years of age. Recent studies of palaeomarine inundation deposits in t...
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Full-text available
The sedimentology, geomorphology and chronology of late Quaternary fluvial landforms and sedimentary sequences within the Mulgrave River catchment in northeast Queensland suggest that episodic stripping or wholesale erosion of Holocene floodplains is a major mode of sediment delivery to the Great Barrier Reef lagoon. The last major phase of Holocen...
Article
Denniston et al. (1) provide an important contribution to the prehistoric record of rainfall and tropical cyclones (TCs) in northwest Australia. The authors identify mud layers within limestone stalagmites as evidence of cave flood events and associate these with the passage of TCs. There is little doubt that the prominent thicker layers of mud, so...
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The dramatic decline in the integrity of Australian river systems in recent decades has seen the development of landcare and catchment management groups across the continent as the main facilitators of river rehabilitation works. There is growing concern for the need to develop adaptive management frameworks that assist informed decision making thr...
Article
The majority of physical risk assessments from storm surge inundations are derived from synthetic time series generated from short climate records, which can often result in inaccuracies and are time consuming and expensive to develop. A new method is presented here for the wet tropics region of northeast Australia. It uses LiDAR generated topograp...
Article
One of the longest and most controversial debates in Australian geomorphology has centred around the issue of drainage evolution. Since E. C. Andrews began to extol the virtues of the Davisian geographic cycle in Australia in 1903, decades of research generated conclusions that in the words of Young (1978) were ‘often as much the product of theory...
Article
Tamura (2012) has provided a comprehensive review (except for the role of tectonics) of the origin of beach ridges globally. As highlighted in the review, beach ridges can develop by a variety of processes depending upon the location and the prevailing climatic and oceanographic conditions. One of the types of beach ridges, the medium to coarse-gra...
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Full-text available
A report from the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) revealed that the largest ever-recorded storm surge was 13 m. This occurred during Tropical Cyclone (TC) Mahina near Bathurst Bay, northeast Australia on March 5, 1899. An initial attempt to resolve the issue of authenticity of this report by Nott and Hayne found no physical field evidence o...
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Full-text available
The assessment of changes in tropical cyclone activity within the context of anthropogenically influenced climate change has been limited by the short temporal resolution of the instrumental tropical cyclone record (less than 50 years). Furthermore, controversy exists regarding the robustness of the observational record, especially before 1990. Her...
Article
[1] Four well-identified tropical cyclones over the past century have been responsible for depositing distinct units of predominantly quartzose sand and gravel to form the most seaward beach ridge at several locations along the wet tropical coast of northeast Queensland, Australia. These units deposited by tropical cyclones display a key sedimentar...
Article
Scheffers et al. (2012) have undertaken a study of the origins of coral rubble ridges on the Abrolhos Islands off the south-west Western Australian coast. Based on this study, in a temperate setting, they have attempted to make comparisons with and draw conclusions about the origin of both coral rubble and sand beach ridges in tropical Australia, w...
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Full-text available
Return periods for tropical cyclone (TC) marine inundations are usually derived from synthetic data sets generated from deterministic models or by extrapolating short historical records. Such approaches contain considerable uncertainties because it is difficult to test their veracity until a sufficiently long period has elapsed. These approaches al...
Article
The marine inundation generated by Tropical Cyclone Yasi, north Queensland, February 2011, flooded at least 130 beachfront homes and many commercial businesses, becoming the most substantial marine inundation impact in Australia's modern history. As a consequence, guidelines for building in storm tide impact areas have been developed and discussion...
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Full-text available
There are now a substantial number of millennial scale records of tropical cyclones from a variety of locations globally. Some of these, such as those in the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico, show patterns of long-term, generally intense, tropical cyclone (TC) behaviour that have been suggested to be due to either variations in ENSO or shifts in the pos...
Article
Reports describing aeolian foredunes and wave-derived beach ridges juxtaposed within a single coastal barrier complex are rare, perhaps because morphological similarities make the two ridge types difficult to differentiate. This study of an approximately 4500 year-old sand ridge plain in northeast Queensland, Australia using landform morphology, se...
Article
The number and types of late Quaternary records of tropical cyclones (TCs) and temperate storms have been increasing globally over the past 10 years. There are now numerous such records for the Atlantic Ocean (USA) and Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean Sea, South Pacific Ocean, and a fewer number from the northwest Pacific and Indian Ocean regions. The...
Article
This study provides the first long-term tropical cyclone record from the Indian Ocean region. Multiple shore parallel ridges composed entirely of one species of marine cockle shell (Fragum eragatum) standing between 3 and 6 m above mean sea level occur at Hamelin Pool, Shark Bay, Western Australia. The ridges record a tropical cyclone history betwe...
Article
A theory is presented that coarse-grained sand beach ridge plains in northeastern Australia have developed their final form (i.e. the height of the ridges above sea level) as a result of marine inundations generated by intense tropical cyclones. Although winds generated during such tempests are of more than sufficient velocity to transport coarse-g...
Article
Editors' Note: The following is the eighth in the Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography Lecture Series. It is based on the plenary presentation of 10 July at the 7th International Conference on Geomorphology held in Melbourne in 2009. Geomorphologists have an important role to not just understand and interpret the nature of processes operating wi...
Article
To date most studies of long-term tropical cyclone records from beach ridge plains (coral, shell and sand) have suggested that there has been little variation in the intensity of these events over the late Holocene. This study, of a sand beach ridge plain in northeast Queensland, Australia, using sedimentary analysis and luminescence chronology, su...
Chapter
Numerous late Holocene records of tropical cyclones have been collected from tropical northern Australia. They are in the form of multiple shore parallel sedimentary ridges deposited over the past 6,000 years and an 800 year long annual resolution oxygen isotope record from a calcium carbonate cave stalagmite. The sedimentary ridges are composed of...
Article
Sand beach ridges are considered to be derived either from aeolian processes and/or waves but their deposition by individual or multiple storms has not been investigated in any detail. We use numerical meteorological and oceanographic models to determine the origin of a sequence of 29 shore parallel sand beach ridges in northeastern Australia. The...
Article
A statistical model for predicting seasonal tropical cyclone landfalls in Queensland, Australia using an index of the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) is presented. The approach uses a generalised linear model (GLM) to relate seasonal counts to the Southern Oscillation Index (SOI). A Bayesian methodology is employed to estimate parameters of the...
Article
Stratigraphy, grain size distribution and foraminiferal assemblages of pre-tsunami and tsunami sediment from the Indian Ocean Tsunami at five sites along the Malaysia–Thailand Peninsula were analyzed to gain information on tsunami sediment source and deposition style. Between three and five stratigraphic units were identified at each site and conta...
Article
Samples of alluvial and colluvial deposits from the coastal plain and coastal valleys north and south of Cairns (17°S) have been dated using optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) protocols, with additional thermoluminescence (TL) and Radiocarbon assays. Coarse fanglomerates from elevated coastal terraces date back to 81 ka, but most are clustered...
Article
Numerous late Holocene records of tropical cyclones have been collected from north-east Queensland, Australia. They are in the form of multiple sedimentary ridges paralleling the shore. The ridges are composed of coral fragments, or shell and sand or pure sand. A method to determine the intensity of the tropical cyclone responsible for deposition o...
Article
Assessing risk from tropical cyclones and predicting the impact of this hazard under a human altered climate is based exclusively upon the behaviour of these events over the past 50–100 yr and often less. Critical to these determinations is an understanding of the full extent of the natural variability of this hazard. The coarse resolution of mille...
Article
The assessment of risks posed by natural hazards such as floods, droughts, earthquakes, tsunamis or cyclones, is often based on short-term historical records that may not reflect the full range or magnitude of events possible. As human populations grow, especially in hazard-prone areas, methods for accurately assessing natural hazard risks are beco...
Article
NOTT, J., 2006. Tropical cyclones and the evolution of the sedimentary coast of northern Australia. Journal of Coastal Research, 22(1), 49–62. West Palm Beach (Florida), ISSN 0749-0208. A considerable portion of the sedimentary coast of northern Australia is dominated by ridge plains (beach ridges) where the ridges are composed of coarse-grained sa...
Article
The assessment of risks posed by natural hazards such as floods, droughts, earthquakes, tsunamis or cyclones, may not reflect the full range or magnitude of events possible. As human populations grow, especially in hazard-prone areas, methods for accurately assessing natural hazard risks are becoming increasingly important. Jonathan Nott describes...
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Full-text available
Comparisons of topographically surveyed debris lines and modelled inundation levels from two category 5 cyclones in Western Australia show close agreement. The largest differences between model predictions and surveyed debris occurred where wave run-up did not overtop the frontal sand dunes and was registered in the coastal landscape. Excellent agr...
Article
The tsunami hypothesis proposes that prehistoric tsunamis may have been larger than historic ones along coasts normally (historically) not associated with major tsunamis. The evidence for the hypothesis rests with the types of unusual sedimentary deposits and erosional forms along coasts where the largest historic and prehistoric storm waves do not...
Article
Full-text available
Records of prehistoric tropical cyclones occur in the form of ridges of coral rubble, sand, shell, sand and shell, and pumice; erosional terraces in raised gravel beaches; barrier washover deposits; and, sediments deposited in the shallow offshore marine environment. Other less well-documented records occur as variations in isotopic ratios within s...
Article
Coastal development in tropical Queensland is being allowed to occur in areas that are prone to catastrophic marine flooding and erosion during intense tropical cyclones. The dangers of allowing development this close to the sea is recognised and accounted for in policies in the United States and Western Australia. However, Queensland government po...
Article
The urban geology of Cairns, on the northeast tropical coast of Australia, is dominated by Quaternary sediments. These sediments provide a record of sea-level change, alluvial and slope response to late Quaternary climatic changes and millennial scale occurrences of various natural hazards. Drying of climate and consequent retraction of rainforest...
Article
Darwin, on the north coast of the Australian mainland lies only 12° south of the equator, and experiences a pronounced wet–dry tropical monsoonal climate. This latitudinal position has strongly influenced the local geology for Darwin is dominated by deeply weathered lateritic regolith formed on labile Cretaceous marine sediments. Close to 2 billion...
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Full-text available
Along 2500 km of the Western Australian coast, prehistoric ephemeral marine inundations (storm surges or tsunamis) were much larger than those that occurred since European settlement. The evidence is in the form of shell and coral deposits atop 30-m-high headlands, sand deposits containing large boulders, shell and coral several kilometers inland,...
Article
Natural hazards are normally viewed as events that occur randomly over time. This precept usually forms the basis for the development of the hazard magnitude-recurrence interval relationship used in risk assessments. However, hazard variability does not always conform to this relationship especially over longer time intervals. Non-stationarity can...
Article
The pre-transport environment of a coastal boulder along with its shape, size and density determines the height of wave required for it to be transported. Different forces act on sub-aerial boulders as opposed to submerged boulders when struck by a wave. Boulders derived from joint bounded blocks on shore platforms predominantly experience lift for...
Article
Drainage patterns along passive continental margins are often hypothesised to be the result of drainage disruption following highland uplift and downwarping of the highland flank. Several studies of stream catchments throughout southeast Australia have demonstrated that the opposite tends to be the case in this region because the field evidence fav...
Article
Well-imbricated large boulders of quartzite, greater than 100 tonnes weight, occur along the crest of an island, 8 m above modern sea-level, in the Gulf of Carpentaria, northern Australia. The imbrication, alignment of boulder A axes parallel and sub-parallel to shore, boulder lithology (Proterozoic quartzite), size grading of boulders along shore...
Article
Luminescence ages from a flight of four paired alluvial terraces in the upper catchment of the Shoalhaven River, southeast highlands, Australia, provide a record of stream behaviour throughout the late Quaternary. Ages ranging from 7 ka in the modern floodplain to nearly 500 ka for the uppermost dated terrace allow comparisons to be made of the res...
Article
Extensive alluvial‐fan and debris‐flow deposits occur along the base of the escarpment of the east Australian highlands in the wet tropics of northeast Queensland. Luminescence and radiocarbon dating show that these deposits accumulated between 27 ka and 14 ka, which was the driest phase of climate during the last full glacial cycle. Climatic desic...
Article
Understanding long-term variability in the occurrence of tropical cyclones that are of extreme intensity is important for determining their role in ecological disturbances, for predicting present and future community vulnerability and economic loss and for assessing whether changes in the variability of such cyclones are induced by climate change....
Article
Tsunami waves can produce four general categories of depositional and erosional signatures that differentiate them from storm waves. Combinations of items from these categories uniquely define the impact of palaeo-tsunami on the coastal landscape. The largest palaeo-tsunami waves in Australia swept sediment across the continental shelf and obtained...
Article
There is now a wide agreement that temperature depression in the humid tropics during the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) was at least 5°C. Most estimates of precipitation reduction at the LGM range from 25–30% to 50–65%, based on proxy data, but the recent CCM1 model envisages only around 12%. Dates obtained from river sediments indicate major changes...
Article
The stratigraphy and sedimentology of Jurassic to Tertiary sediments within the Laura and Carpentaria basins in northeastern Australia show that the continental drainage divide here predates the onset of continental margin formation and has remained stationary since the Middle Jurassic. This result is contrary to models of the evolution of highland...
Article
Sediments preserved at the base of rare types of waterfalls provide records of terrestrial floods to 30 kyr or more, being approximately 6–10 times longer than that usually obtained from the traditional slackwater method. These coarse-grained sand deposits form ridges and levees adjacent to plunge pools at the foot of unindented escarpments and wit...
Article
Thermoluminescence ages from a longitudinal dunefield in tropical northern Australia suggest that complete dune activation occurred here either continuously or sporadically between approximately 8.2 ka and 5.9 ka. This period, in Australia, is normally ascribed to one of increasingly warm and wet conditions towards the Holocene Climatic Optimum. Ho...
Article
Last July's tsunami in Papua New Guinea was as intense and catastrophic as news reports indicated, a scientific survey has found, and recommendations have been put forth to avert such a disaster in the future. The tsunami and the earthquake that generated it occurred July 17, 1998, and the International Tsunami Survey Team (ITST) began a weeklong i...
Article
A hydrodynamic approach is used to determine whether tsunami- or cyclone-generated waves were responsible for the deposition of fields of well-imbricated rock boulders (up to 290 tonnes) along the coast of Cairns inside the Great Barrier Reef, Australia. Calculations of the overturning moments show that only tsunami are capable of moving such large...
Article
1. The stratigraphy of the Sydney Basin strata and the presence of palaeolandforms on the New South Wales south coast dispute the notion that the coastal lowland in these specific locations resulted from tectonic lowering of the upland plateau. These regions therefore cannot be used as evidence for a tectonic origin for parts of the New South Wales...
Article
A central question in the earth sciences is how rates and styles of landscape evolution have varied over time in response to climate and sea-level change, tectonic and isostatic uplift, and human disturbance. The Quaternary has been a period of major landscape evolution in many glaciated regions of the world, but few data sets of sufficient length...
Article
Late Pleistocene and Holocene sea-levels along sections of the northern Australian coastline were significantly higher than present. An in situ, raised coral reef on the western shore of the Gulf of Carpentaria returned 14C ages of 26 ka BP. and 30 ka BP. The results of independent studies of Late Quaternary environments, both here and near-by and...
Article
Detailed field analysis across a 5000 km area of the western edge of the Arnhem Land plateau in northern Australia revealed that widespread subcircular depressions measuring up to 250 m across and 10 m deep developed by exhumation of the troughs of giant lunate current ripples within the Mesoproterozoic Kombolgie Formation. These depressions were f...
Article
The long standing issue of the dominance of scarp retreat versus summit lowering in the denudation of a highland mass is investigated with supporting evidence provided by Tertiary basalts throughout the Shoalhaven catchment in southeast Australia. Both of these forms of denudation are found to be insignificant compared to the role of fluvial gorge...
Article
Relict plunge-pool sedimentary sequences provide much longer paleoflood records than normally provided by slackwater deposits and other previously reported paleoflood sedimentary signatures. The only two relict plunge-pool sedimentary sequences so far reported lie 300 km apart in tropical northern Australia and provide a record of extreme floods fo...
Article
The author examines the role that global warming could have on the size and frequency of 'one in 100 year' flood events of the type that hit areas of Queensland in May 1996. In order to aid the prediction of these events in the face of only marginal current climatic changes, the author examines the nature of climate change and flood behaviour in th...
Article
The presence of Early Cretaceous lavas near Mt Dromedary on the coastal plain of southern New South Wales places constraints on the accuracy and applicability for this region of recent models of the Late Mesozoic uplift and erosion of the southeastern highlands. These models are based on apatite fission track ages and mean fission track lengths, an...
Article
The longevity of landscapes on cratons has set them apart from those in the tectonic settings. This is exemplified over much of the North Australian Craton where landscapes that have for over half a century been argued to be largely the product of cycles of erosion throughout the Cainozoic are in fact composed mainly of ranges, valleys, and plains...
Article
Previous interpretations have argued that this landscape experienced repeated cycles of uplift and erosion during the Tertiary. This view is challenged by the evidence of two palaeovalleys which traverse the island: both are filled with Cretaceous sedimentary rocks and are incised into a plateau surface of supposedly Miocene age. The Cretaceous mar...
Article
Stratigraphic differentiation of Wuaternary coastal sedimentary sequences is frequently based upon the recognition of individual palaeosols. A number of assumptions are commonly made in the compilation of such lithostratigraphies; first, that the development of soil profiles (spodosols) within coastal sedimentary sequences occur within stable sedim...
Article
The development of landsurfaces in the north of the Northern Territory has traditionally been attributed to successive episodes of uplift, erosion and weathering. The lower and younger two of the four landsurfaces attributed to such development, the Wave Hill and Koolpinyah surfaces, dominate the landscape in the Darwin region. Investigations of th...
Article
The role of sub-aerial processes in the development of coastal configurations and related rock landforms in tropical regions has in the past been largely ignored. Formation of the Darwin coast and environs in the seasonally dry tropics of northern Australia has been strongly influenced by deep weathering processes. Substantial lengths of this coast...
Article
Sedimentary sequences in the form of ridges or terraces surrounding plunge pools at the base of waterfalls can provide records of past discharge and as a consequence an indirect measure of rainfall variations over many thousands of years. Waves generated by the waterfall deposit sands and pebbles as a beach at the perimeter of the plunge pool. As c...
Article
Well preserved spores and pollen from a number of middle Oligocene sedimentary formations in the middle Shoalhaven catchment N.S.W. are correlated with the Upper Nothofagidites asperus-Lower Proteacidites tuberculatus Zones of the Gippsland Basin, Victoria. Further confirmation of this correlation comes from three sources: (a) the relative abundanc...
Article
The long-term evolution of streams in the Shoalhaven catchment of southeast New South Wales has been a contentious issue for decades. Several authors have suggested that the Shoalhaven River was captured at the sharp eastward bend near Tallong: this has been used as evidence for the westward migration of the east Australian divide in this area. Oth...
Article
Thermoluminescence dating of relict source-bordering dunes in the middle and upper Shoalhaven catchment show them to have been active between l9ka and 6ka. During this time, except for a brief period of dune stability sometime between 18 ka and 14ka, the climate of this area was considerably drier than present. The onset of aeolian activity here co...
Article
The age of the NSW coastal lowland from Tuross to the Victorian border can now be shown to be at least mid‐Tertiary. By this time the coastal plain had twice been partially blanketed by terrestrial sediments. Palaeomagnetic determinations on the more recent of these sedimentary accumulations, the Long Beach Formation, reveal a minimum depositional...
Article
1] Prediction of future tropical cyclone climate scenarios requires identification of quasi-periodicities at a variety of temporal scales. Extension of records to identify trends at century and millennial scales is important, but to date the emerging field of paleotempestology has been hindered by the lack of a suitable methodology to discern the i...

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