11 December 2020
The Morrison Government is backing a new era of environmental science, announcing the universities and research centres that will host four ‘mega’ research hubs in the next phase of Australia’s National Environmental Science Program (NESP).
Research will be prioritised to meet the most pressing environmental management and policy needs, with an emphasis on climate adaptation, threatened species, protected places, and waste impacts.
Minister for the Environment Sussan Ley said the new structure will bring together an exciting range of scientists in each field along with ‘on-ground’ stakeholders and Traditional Owners to tackle our most complex environmental challenges.
We are investing a further $149 million in a flexible approach across the new hubs that informs policy and drives shared learning.
– Minister for the Environment, Sussan Ley
Projects working alongside research users to deliver practical on-ground solutions, such as the Bininj/Mungguy healthy country indicators for Kakadu project, are a focus of the next round of NESP funding. Photo by Microsoft.
It is an investment that will build on the $145 million funding to date that has seen almost 400 successful science projects that are shaping policy and delivering practical environmental outcomes. From award winning research into shellfish reef restoration, to Crown of Thorns Starfish control, DNA ‘tracking’ of threatened species, and collaborations with international technology companies to support remote ecosystems in Kakadu, the first phase of NESP has been breathtaking. Over the next 7 years, the next phase of the program will see larger hubs, working collaboratively across our four priority issues, while researching practical, environmental science strategies within their own field.
– Minister Ley
Innovative projects, such as those assessing the use of eDNA to monitor terrestrial animals, are also a focus of the next round of NESP funding. Photo by Minden Pictures.
The four new NESP Hubs are:
The new hubs will come into effect in early 2021, with the existing hubs running until mid-2021.
This process ensures the NESP program continues to deliver valuable research throughout the transition.
Read more about the Resilient Landscapes Hub in a release from The University of Western Australia.
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