Dbytes #152 (10 June 2014)

Info & news for members and associates of the Environmental Decision Group
“A ‘Fred Sanger’ would not survive today’s world of science. With continuous reporting and appraisals, some committee would note that he published little of import between insulin in 1952 and his first paper on RNA sequencing in 1967 with another long gap until DNA sequencing in 1977. He would be labelled as unproductive, and his modest personal support would be denied. We no longer have a culture that allows individuals to embark on long-term ‒ and what would be considered today extremely risky ‒ projects.”
Professor Sydney Brenner

General News

1. Green Paper on developing Northern Australia
2. Datasets, including associated metadata, used in the production of Australia’s State of the Forests Report 2013
3. Optimal search theory, MH370, detection probabilities and Bayesian stats in the news…
4. CSIRO images to go Creative Commons
5. What would a ‘representative’ climate change debate look like

EDG News

Perth: Marit Kragt wheatbelt work featured on WA ScienceNetwork Melbourne: Reid Tingley and Darren Southwell on halting the spread of cane toads
Brisbane: Yvonne Buckley and Yi Han on managing the side effects of invasion control
Canberra: David Lindenmayer awarded Order of Australia

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1. Green Paper on developing Northern Australia Minister Warren Truss issued a Green Paper on northern development and announced the members of a Northern Australia Advisory Group. The announcement doesn’t mention environmental values: “It will open the north as a new frontier for Australia—economically and socially.” http://www.minister.infrastructure.gov.au/wt/releases/2014/June/wt084_2014.aspx

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2. Datasets, including associated metadata, used in the production of Australia’s State of the Forests Report 2013 The Australia’s State of the Forests Report series is produced every five years to fulfil requirements of the National Forest Policy Statement and the Regional Forest Agreement Act 2002. The most recent report was Australia’s State of the Forests Report 2013, released in March 2014. Datasets, including supporting metadata statements, underpinning key indicators in each report are also published for use by various stakeholders including Australian, state and territory government agencies, industry and research institutions and the public in general. -Forests of Australia 2013 is a national dataset of forest extent by national forest types. -Tenure of Australia’s Forests 2013 is a national dataset of tenure classified into forest tenure classes. -Australia’s Indigenous forest estate 2013 is a national dataset of forested and non-forested land over which Indigenous Australians have legislated use and rights. Each metadata statement provides summary information about the dataset, such as purpose, geographical extent, available data formats, data currency, information sources, access constraints and data quality. The metadata statements also provide detailed information about how each dataset was compiled from source data, and therefore provide users with information to allow appropriate interpretation and further use of the datasets. http://www.daff.gov.au/abares/pages/publications/display.aspx?url=http://143.188.17.20/anrdl/DAFFService/display.php?fid=pb_dasfr13g9abfs20140604_11a.xml

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3. Optimal search theory, MH370, detection probabilities and Bayesian stats in the news… [includes a quote from Mick McCarthy] http://www.news.com.au/travel/travel-updates/missing-malaysia-airlines-flight-mh370-search-goes-back-to-basics-turning-to-the-power-of-maths-to-solve-the-mystery/story-fnizu68q-1226941119783

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4. CSIRO images to go Creative Commons

From Australia’s first computer to an echidna puggle wriggling to life, CSIRO’s ScienceImage library boasts six decades worth of scientific happy snaps. And this library – of more than 4,000 photos and videos – is now free for public use under a Creative Commons license. Dip into the library on the ScienceImage website. [Editor’s note: they have some great environment/wildlife/conservation imagery!!] http://www.scienceimage.csiro.au/

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5. What would a ‘representative’ climate change debate look like [Contributed by Toss Gascoigne] John Oliver sets up a debate that represent the ‘balance’ of opinion https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cjuGCJJUGsg&feature=kp

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EDG News

Perth: Marit Kragt wheatbelt work featured on WA ScienceNetwork “We used APSIM modelling and economic analyses to assess the trade-offs between farm revenues from crop production and ecosystem services. Our paper shows that win-win opportunities exist for some environmental management activities in broadacre farming.” http://www.sciencewa.net.au/topics/agriculture/item/2844-wheatbelt-mixed-crop-livestock-farms-modelled

Melbourne: Reid Tingley and Darren Southwell on halting the spread of cane toads “Cane toads are one of the worst invasive species in Australia. Introduced to Queensland in 1935 as a biological control agent, the toads have spread at a formidable pace across northern Australia, and have had major impacts on native predators such as goannas, quolls, and freshwater crocodiles. The toads have now reached the Kimberley and there is no sign that their conquest is nearing completion. Toads seem invincible. But are there any chinks in their armour that might help us control their spread? Researchers from QAECO are currently attempting to answer precisely this question…” http://qaeco.com/2014/05/27/halting-the-spread-of-cane-toads/

Brisbane: Yvonne Buckley and Yi Han on managing the side effects of invasion control
Yvonne Buckley (Trintiy College, CEED & NERP) and Yi Han (UQ EDG PhD student) have had a Perspective published in Science entitled “Managing the side effects of invasion control”. Its great article highlighting some of the uncertainty and considerations around invasive species and their interactions with other species and how important it is to consider these in invasive species management. http://www.sciencemag.org/content/344/6187/975.full

Canberra: David Lindenmayer awarded Order of Australia. David Lindenmayer was awarded the honour of Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) on Monday 9 June for distinguished service to conservation and the environment in the field of landscape ecology, to tertiary education, and to professional organisations.

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About Dbytes

Dbytes is the eNewsletter of the Environmental Decisions Group. If you have any contributions to Dbytes (ie, opportunities and resources that you think might think be of value to other Dbyte readers) please send them to David Salt (David.Salt@anu.edu.au). Please keep them short and provide a link for more info. Also, email David if you want to unsubscribe (or subscribe someone else). While Dbytes is primarily aimed at members of the EDG, anyone is welcome to receive it.

 

About EDG

The Environmental Decision Group (EDG) is a network of conservation researchers working on the science of effective decision making to better conserve biodiversity. Our members are largely based at the University of Queensland, the Australian National University, the University of Melbourne, the University of Western Australia, RMIT and CSIRO. The EDG is jointly funded by the Australian Government’s National Environmental Research Program (NERP) and the Australian Research Council’s Centre of Excellence program (CEED).

CEED: http://ceed.edu.au/

NERP ED: http://www.nerpdecisions.edu.au/

EDG: http://www.edg.org.au/

EDG major events: http://www.edg.org.au/events.html

Decision Point: http://www.decision-point.com.au/

 

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