The ACE CRC is focussed not only on producing great research, but also on ensuring uptake of our research outcomes in the wider community. Our focus is on the publication of timely, plain-English assessments of recent developments in climate science and related policy issues; proactive and regular liaison with industry and government; regular workshops and seminars for industry and government across all research programs; and implementation of our communications plan.
Informing policy through government and international agencies
Our research is an important source of information for government departments responsible for assessing and developing policy on climate change, and for international agencies that help to inform governments, other organisations and the public about climate change science.
For example, in an area such as sea-level rise, projections by ACE scientists will enable policy makers to more accurately judge the scale and timing of the response needed. Knowledge of changes in the cryosphere will enable the creation of more accurate global climate models to be used in planning. Ice core research is increasing our knowledge of climate history and therefore our ability to determine whether climate events in Australia, such as drought, are outside the range of normal climate variability. Our research will increase the accuracy of carbon cycle models and will be used to guide carbon management and regulation. It will provide a scientific basis for the evaluation and regulation of experimental activities such as ocean fertilisation. Our ecosystems research will help to inform government agencies charged with managing marine biodiversity, biological conservation and sustainable fishing.
- The government departments and international agencies using our research include:
- The Department of Climate Change and Energy Efficiency
- The Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities, including the Australian Antarctic Division
- The Department of Industry Innovation Science and Research, including the CSIRO and the developers of its Australian Community Climate and Earth System Simulator (ACCESS)
- The Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry
- State and local governments
- The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
- International Ocean Carbon Coordination Project
- CO2/CLIVAR (the CO2 component of the Climate Variability and Predictability project)
- GEOTRACES (an international program which aims to improve the understanding of biogeochemical cycles and large-scale distribution of trace elements and their isotopes in the marine environment
- The International Whaling Commission
- The Convention on the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources
- Non government Organisations such as WWF
Continuing with our successful format of producing plain English synopses of the latest science for policymakers ('Position Analyses'), ACE introduced its ‘Report Card' format, publishing 'Report Card: Southern Ocean Acidification' in late 2010.
In 2009, ACE researchers Dr Ian Allison and Prof Nathan Bindoff were significant contributors to 'The Copenhagen Diagnosis: Updating the World on the Latest Climate Science' (2009). This report synthesises the most policy-relevant climate science published since the close-off of material for the last IPCC report. It serves as an interim evaluation of the evolving science mid-way through an IPCC cycle - IPCC AR5 is not due for completion until 2013. The report also served as a handbook of science updates that supplemented the IPCC AR4 for the Copenhagen Climate Conference in December 2009.
ACE regularly holds short courses for policymakers and public servants in Canberra. The objective was to provide an overview of the latest Antarctic and climate change science relevant to the audience.
ACE is in the process of developing a range of vocational short courses on climate change and Antarctic-related science topics.
We also conduct sea-level rise and sea-level extremes workshops and seminar. These events outline the latest sea-level science and our technique to estimate the likelihood of flooding under future sea-level rise. During 2009-2010, almost 1000 participants in key capital cities and major coastal communities around Australia attended these events. An online version of these events is now available as a self-paced training course (accessible via www.sealevelrise.info).
End User Forums
ACE scientist Dr Tessa Vance and her colleagues, Dr Tas van Ommen, Joel Pedro and Rob King have initiated “Climate Conversations”, a series of community forums designed to encourage a conversation between scientists and the public about climate change. During the presentation the scientists use a 2000-year-old ice core from Antarctica to help explain the history of climate change.
View: Dr Andrew Constable (Program Leader Ecosystems Impacts) talking about the utilisation of his research
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