The Conversation

17 July 2013

Australia’s natural resources are reaching a crisis point as they struggle to support and sustain our lifestyles. But while degradation of these systems continues, research suggests the level of concern for the environment is falling. So could encouraging some national pride in our natural resources help improve the environment’s outlook? Read more




ABC News

27 October 2013

Observers on Lady Elliot Island off south-east Queensland say they have never seen so many endangered green turtles mating so early in the season.

The island, at the southern end of the Great Barrier Reef, is a haven for wildlife and for the past month it has been a focal point of animal activity. Read more




The Newsport Daily

11 February 2014

Of over 173,000 protected areas, the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area is the second most ‘irreplaceable’ natural World Heritage Areas on earth and the sixth most irreplaceable protected area, according to a team of international scientists.

Data on the world’s 173,461 terrestrial protected areas and 21,419 species on The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species were analysed to provide advice on improving the effectiveness of the earth’s protected areas in protecting our global biodiversity. Read more




The Conversation

28 May 2013

When the Great Barrier Reef was first placed on the World Heritage List in 1981, it was recognised as being home to a huge diversity of species, many of them threatened. Conserving the reef’s habitats would therefore be a great way to protect many different species all at the same time.

Naturally, some of these thousands of species have attracted more attention than others. Generally these are large animals with high tourism value – often called the “charismatic megafauna” – such as marine mammals, turtles, sea snakes, sharks, rays and seabirds. Many of these species are listed as either threatened or migratory under Australia’s environmental legislationRead more




The Conversation

02 August 2013

In work we published in Science today we look at two conflicting ideas on whether species can adapt to climate change. Are our ideas about extinction too catastrophic, or do we actually need to do more to protect biodiversity?

Picture a polar bear, perched precariously on a small iceberg somewhere in the diminishing Arctic icecap. This iconic image is often used to portray the fate species will suffer as human-driven climate change accelerates. Yes, the forecasts are dire. Using various modelling approaches, researchers predict major reductions in species distributions and increased rates of extinction, especially in the tropics and globally across mountains. Read more





17 June 2013

It will be the first scientific survey of this scale about people's perceptions for the whole of the Great Barrier Reef, covering marine tourism, traditional owners, ports and shipping, aquaculture, mining, residents and coastal communities.

CSIRO social scientist and project lead Dr Nadine Marshall said decision makers need as much information as possible to understand the role people will play in the future of the Great Barrier Reef. Read more


The Conversation

11 September 2013

I’ve heard that we should stop talking about “pure” science and “applied” science; that we should only be talking about “good” science and “bad” science. Last year, CSIRO Chief Executive Megan Clark said as much during question time at her National Press Club address, and this year I heard it recommended again at the Universities Australia Conference. So let’s talk good and bad. Read more




Red Orbit

02 October 2012

The Great Barrier Reef in Australia is the world’s largest coral reef, and the only living thing on Earth that is visible from space. The Great Barrier Reef is approximately 3000 kilometers long and up to 65 kilometers wide in some places.

According to new research from the Australian Institute of Marine Science (AIMS ), the Great Barrier Reef has lost half of its coral cover in the last 27 years. The research team attributes this loss to storm damage (48%), crown of thorns starfish (42%), and bleaching (10%). Read more




The Guardian

09 August 2013

The United Nations body responsible for world heritage has said the Australian government has not informed it of plans to create one of the world's largest coalports adjacent to the The Great Barrier Reef and should put development on hold.

Marc Patry, programme specialist at the UNESCO World Heritage Centre, told Guardian Australia that a letter was sent to the government on Thursday asking for more information on proposed dredging to expand the Abbot Point site. Read more




The Sydney Morning Herald

15 November 2013

Global warming is causing a silent storm in the oceans by acidifying waters at a record rate, threatening marine life from coral reefs to fish stocks, an international study showed.

The report, by 540 experts in 37 nations, said the seas could become 170 per cent more acidic by 2100 compared to levels before the Industrial Revolution. Carbon dioxide, the main greenhouse gas, can become a mild acid when mixed with water. Read more





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