Postcard from Jervis Bay: tracking fish living on sand

The author on the water in Jervis Bay. Photo credit: Lachlan Fetterplace

The author on the water in Jervis Bay. Photo credit: Lachlan Fetterplace

By Lachlan Fetterplace, Global Challenges Travel Scholar

A big part of my December last year was spent sitting in a boat and performing surgery on fish; perhaps not the most normal lead up to Christmas but one that has become fairly regular of late.

I can’t say that I mind. Sitting on a boat in the beautiful Jervis Bay day after day certainly has it charms. Though to be sure, there are definitely days that don’t quite fit the idyllic pictures you are probably imagining – when a big storm rolls in with its attendant swell, wind and rain, combined with long, long days neck deep in bait, and volunteers battling seasickness.

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Postcard from Portland: coastal research and coffee roasters

By Chris Owers, Global Challenges Travel Scholar

The Global Challenges Travel Scholarship gave me the opportunity to attend one of the largest international conferences for coastal and estuarine science. It did not disappoint.

The CERF conference was held in Portland, Oregon in November. Photo credit: Chris Owers

The CERF conference was held in Portland, Oregon in November. Photo credit: Chris Owers

The Coastal and Estuarine Research Foundation (CERF) is a North American-based organisation focused on ‘advancing human understanding and appreciation of the Earth’s estuaries and coasts’.

This year’s CERF conference was held in Portland, Oregon, attracting more than 1500 scientists, managers and graduate students. Among the fantastic coffee roasters and microbreweries, the venue was well placed for the theme of ‘Grand Challenges in Coastal and Estuarine Science: Securing Our Future’.

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Postcard from the skies: coastlines, climate change, and the Beatles

By Lauren Cole, Global Challenges Travel Scholar

The author's research involves surveying the NSW coastline. Photo credit: iStock

The author’s research involves surveying the NSW coastline. Photo credit: iStock

Aeroplanes. One cruising the beautiful New South Wales coast and another destined for Liverpool, England.

My Global Challenges PhD scholarship sent me into the sky to assist with my research and attend an international conference.

My research falls under the challenge of Sustaining Coastal and Marine Zones, particularly macroalgal habitat. Phyllospora comosa is endemic to south-eastern Australia and commonly found along subtidal reefs, as wrack (pieces that have broken from shore and are floating at sea) and as drift that has washed up on beaches.

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Postcard from the UK: what does the future hold for coastal living?

By Charles Gillon (@CharlieGillon)

The author at Edinburgh Castle. Photo credit: Charles Gillon

The author at Edinburgh Castle. Photo credit: Charles Gillon

I’m a third-year PhD candidate in the Department of Geography and Sustainable Communities at UOW.

My research interests centre on the motivations and decision-making behind new housing supply in Sydney, looking specifically at master-planned housing estates.

Sydney’s metropolitan population, currently 4.3 million, is expected to grow by an additional 1.6 million people in the next 20 years.

Providing this growing population with the appropriate housing stock is an urgent challenge for planners and property developers.

My PhD is a study of the housing market in Cronulla as one piece of this greater jigsaw.

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Sustaining the world’s tuna stocks is a global challenge

Yellowfin tuna can be found in the Pacific Ocean. Photo credit: ThinkStock

Yellowfin tuna can be found in the Pacific Ocean. Photo credit: ThinkStock

By Brooke Campbell, UOW-ANCORS

If you’ve ever enjoyed a tuna steak, had tuna sashimi, or relied on canned tuna for a quick meal, there’s a roughly 60 per cent chance that this tuna was caught somewhere in the Western and Central Pacific Ocean (WCPO).

This vast ocean area is home to more than 22 Pacific Islands and overseas territories as well as countless marine species. Many of these species, like tuna, travel great distances across numerous international, national, and domestic legal maritime boundaries every year in search of food, breeding grounds, and favourable ocean conditions.

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Australia, the island nation: our dependence on shipping

What impact do anchors have on our coastline? Photo credit: ThinkStock

What impact do anchors have on our coastline? Photo credit: ThinkStock

By Allison Broad

It seems that many Australians, without really thinking about it too hard, tend to assume that their entire consumer needs arrive by truck.

But this is by no means the case. Australia, as an island nation, is critically dependent on shipping with around 99 per cent of our trade by volume being carried by sea.

A glance offshore confirms this. A common feature of the Wollongong coastline, as many local residents would know, is numerous large shipping vessels lining the horizon.

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A ticket to London: PhD reflections on art, environment and family

JW_3 By Justin Westgate, Global Challenges Travel Scholar

I knew immediately what my Global Challenges Travel Scholarship would go towards: a plane ticket to London. My goal: attending the joint conference of the Institute of British Geographers and Royal Geographical Society. This is the key geography conference in the UK, held each year.

It was my first international conference, and a good one at which to be presenting my doctoral research. The conference is large – around 2000 attendees this year – which covers the wide range of research within geography.

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Warm as toast? Exploring diverse cultures of thermal comfort

The author spent a number of years living in hot Tanzania. Photo credit: ThinkStock

The author spent a number of years living in hot Tanzania. Photo credit: ThinkStock

By Natascha Klocker

Think about a time when you’ve lived in, or visited, another country, one where the climate is very different from what you’re used to.

How did you adapt? Were your strategies for keeping warm (or cool) dissimilar to those of the local population? Was your thermal comfort threshold noticeably different?

When I was a PhD student, I spent a number of years living in Tanzania.

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Wollongong vs Kiel: comparing the challenges facing our coastal regions

The Kiel Canal, which connects the Baltic and the North Sea, at the locks in Kiel-Holtenau and the Kiel Fjord. Photo credit: Barbara Neumann

The Kiel Canal, which connects the Baltic and the North Sea, at the locks in Kiel-Holtenau and the Kiel Fjord. Photo credit: Barbara Neumann

By Dr Barbara Neumann

If we turn our inner eye on the coast we may see different things.

We see beaches, cliffs and headlands; fishing, bathing, surfing, sailing; land, estuaries, lagoons, sand spits, sea, or sea country; industries, mining, tourism, shipping, energy farming; marshes, mangroves, dunes, coastal forests. Sometimes we see storms, surges, flooding, and erosion, or do we see ‘seachange’?

Coasts – or rather coastal zones – are complex systems where humans and nature, land and sea have long interacted, though lately at an increasing rate.

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Poor households do the heavy lifting in reducing energy consumption

Do you drink lots of hot drinks to stay warm in winter? Photo credit: ThinkStock

Do you drink lots of hot drinks to stay warm in winter? Photo credit: ThinkStock

By Professor Lesley Head

There has been much public discussion in recent weeks about the need for heavy lifting, specifically, sharing the heavy lifting of restoring the Federal budget to surplus.

If questions of equity and sharing are complex in the context of the Budget, they are even more so in relation to climate change mitigation and adaptation.

There is no cost-free way to make the necessary transition to lower greenhouse gas emissions.

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