The Climate Adaptation Program includes a series of research and development partnerships and a total R&D&E investment of over $9M from 2010 to 2014. This was led by FRDC with the partnership going across Australian and State Governments, CSIRO and universities as the lead co-investors.

Below is more information about the research undertaken as part of the Climate Adaptation Program:

 

Climate Change Projects

• 2009-074 Marine Australia: directions for management & further research; building on the findings of the Climate Change Adaptation – Marine Biodiversity & Fisheries R&D initiative
This project summarises the findings of a series of research and development partnerships and a total RD&E investment of over $9M from 2010 to 2014.
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The toolset developed in this project is unique in providing a mechanism to assess the cascade of risk from regional scales down to species, for fisheries and aquaculture impacts arising from climate change. 
 
Fishers, managers, and policy makers in the south-east have a greater appreciation of the physical changes that are occurring in the south-east as a result of the historical analysis as part of this project. The main outcomes to date have been to inform planning of the remaining south-east Australia program (SEAP) investment in the SEAP.
 
This project provides an objective framework for prioritising future research, based on the relative sensitivities of species to climate change drivers and recognition that limited resources will be available to support further work.
 
The aim of this project was to develop a transparent and clearly articulated framework of weighted objectives, against which the performance of selected management adaptations can be assessed as part of DCC/FRDC Project 2011/039 Preparing fisheries for climate change: identifying adaptation options for four key fisheries in South Eastern Australia. 
 
Despite concerns about their conservation status, gulper shark catch and effort data from commercial vessels are limited and unreliable, largely because species identification of gulper sharks is difficult, particularly for untrained personnel. Despite concerns about their conservation status, gulper shark catch and effort data from commercial vessels are limited and unreliable, largely because species identification of gulper sharks is difficult, particularly for untrained personnel.
 
Waters along Australia’s south-east coast are warming at 3.8 times the global average rate. Ecosystems in this region are therefore likely to be severely impacted by climate change and significant biodiversity change is expected. The rapid nature of these ecosystem changes requires science-based decisions about where, how and when to apply adaptive management interventions. Well informed predictive models are needed to estimate likely ecological changes and inform management actions such as spatial closures to protect vulnerable habitats, translocation of key predators, or direct manipulation of abundances of threatening and or threatened species. Our study addressed these challenges using a mix of long-term (up to 20-yr) monitoring records of fishes, invertebrates and macro-algae in, and adjacent to marine reserves in the region undertaken as part of University and/or State agency research programs. 
  
Climate change in general, and ocean acidification in particular, has been identified as a potential threat to the long­‐term survival of coral reefs. The magnitude of the risk to the reefs in the marine reserves depends on two factors: (1) how sensitive Solenosmilia
variabilis is to low carbonate levels and (2) future conditions in the seamount environment. This project assesses these factors using all available information to determine the corals tolerance limits and using state- of- the art ocean biogeochemical models to estimate future environmental conditions in the marine reserve.
 
The primary outcome of this project was to provide various stakeholders in the multifaceted barramundi fishery (including both the commercial/recreational wild fishery and aquaculture industry) with targeted scientific data and models assessing the vulnerability of this iconic species to future impacts of climate change.
 
The objective of the project was to gain a better understanding of how engagement for effective partnerships should occur and to develop a process model for engagement and development of climate change adaptation options.

The project identified requirements for adaptive marine biodiversity conservation governance in the context of climate change. These requirements have influenced how governing agency personnel think about governance design.

This project has increased connectedness between seabird and marine mammal researchers, managers and policy makers about the range of climate impacts that are already being experienced by these iconic taxa in Australian waters.

 This project has delivered a proof of concept, online, interactive mapping and data delivery tool for the oyster industry and estuarine catchment managers; The Oyster Information Portal (OIP: www.oysterinformationportal.net.au). 
 
• 2010-536 Beach and surf tourism and recreation in Australia: vulnerability and adaptation
The project expanded the availability and temporal relevance of estimates of the economic value of beach and coastal assets in Australia, roughly doubling the number of available estimates for use in desktop assessments.
 
The project has had three clear outcomes: an insight into the community level understanding of marine climate change; a web-based blueprint communicating marine climate knowledge and information and also providing an opportunity for community level vulnerability assessments; and lastly, an increased understanding of the usefulness of qualitative approaches to modelling marine climate impacts at a community level.

• 2010-554 Effects of climate change on reproduction, larval development, and population growth of coral trout (Plectropomus spp.)
This project has unequivocally shown that coral trout and particularly, Plectropomus leopardus, are sensitive to changes in habitat and environmental conditions expected to occur as a consequence of sustained and ongoing climate change.
 
This project was intended to develop and promote a national framework to evaluate potential translocation of native marine species. The project investigated the feasibility of reintroducing blue groper into Tasmania waters as a test case, and the design of a monitoring and evaluation programs to determine the effects of a trial re-introduction.
 
An important outcome of this project has been a greater understanding of the impacts of climate change on northern Australia's key fisheries species and their environment.

This report is the first national perspective of the implications of climate change on recreational fisheries and the recreational fishing industry providing a platform for further discussion of the ecological impact on species and evaluation of adaptation and mitigation options.
 
This project was developed using the results of a formal assessment of the relative risk to climate change impacts on key fisheries species of south east Australia. The goal of the project was to identify adaptation options to enhance the profitability of commercial fisheries and maximise opportunities for participation in recreational fishing.
 
The project was developed in response to the threats to the fisheries values, biodiversity and ecosystem functions posed by Climate Change on Australia’s estuarine and coastal marine ecosystems that are already heavily impacted by changes in land and water use. We found that successful adaptation strategies needed to be developed in a broad context, focussing on whole-of-systems, long-term outcomes.
 
This report summarises the ability of Australia’s coastal wetland ecosystems, particularly mangroves, saltmarsh and seagrass to capture and store carbon.
 
The overall premise to this project is that adaptation by Australian fisheries and aquaculture sectors to climate change will be enhanced by increased awareness of markets and opportunities along the supply chain. The specific project outcomes were (i) to identify inefficiencies and potential points for enhancing profitability (ii) identification of strengths and weaknesses in the value chain, and together with the LCA, development of adaptation options, and (iii) development of realistic adaptation management and policy options to enhance cost-effectiveness along the supply chain.
 
The project was a national project to increase knowledge and understanding of climate change and adaptation in the fishing industry and coastal communities.  The project focused on 3 case study areas in the tropics, south west and south east of Australia. 
Given that climate change information is not seen as a priority issue in many communities, specialised understanding and approaches were required.  Traditional and innovative techniques were used to successfully communicate and deliver this information. 
 
• 2012-036 Revitalising Australia’s Estuaries
This project puts forward the proposal that stakeholders and government should concentrate on repair of the more developed coastal catchments around Australia where major investment and Australian Government leadership is required to re‐establish estuary productivity. 

 

Preparing Fisheries for Climate Change - Factsheets