Recent Climate Change Talk at Y Water Reveals Grim Outlook For Our Region

by Nov 25, 20190 comments

Climate Change Scientist Professor, David Karoly was the second of four high profile guest speakers to participate in a Speaker Series held at the Y Water Discovery Centre on Friday 15 November. David’s presentation, titled ‘Climate change and community responses’ was well attended with nearly 50 guests from across Murrindindi Shire.    

Professor Karoly, heads up the Earth Systems and Climate Change Hub of the National Environmental Science Program for the CSIRO using the vast amount of research an scientific knowledge to provide independent advice to the Federal Government on climate change matters.

His informative presentation and responses to questions was both enlightening and somewhat frightening. David explained that over 95% of climate scientists around the world agree with the extensive data, much of it examined from ice cores extracted from nearly 2km below the ice caps conclude that we are experiencing climate change at a rapidly accelerating rate. Human activity in Australia over the past two centuries is a significant factor driving this change.. 

David also explained that results from numerous independent computer models from around the world were being used to predict the impacts of those changes to communities such as ours here in Yea, and the lesser impacts that likely to occur if communities, and governments changed green-house gas emitting practices. 

Some projected changes by the year 2050 included: 

  • An increase in Annual mean maximum temperature of 2.8o
  • Average rainfall to remain steady but with less during the cooler season and more, intense storms during the warmer season. 
  • A reduction in the number of frost (<0 oC) days, potentially impacting on the region’s horticultural enterprises that rely on frosts for crops to set.
  • A doubling in the number of days with temperatures exceeding 35oC

 

One of David’s key messages though was that while politicians at all levels may debate and delay implementing the significant policy changes needed to reverse the current trend of increased emissions, we as individuals, families, communities and municipalities have capacity to change practices, slow down and reverse the trend that will make it difficult for species, including humans to adapt and survive.

 

These practices were broadly categorised as:

  • More efficient use of energy
  • Greater use of low-carbon and no-carbon energy, many of these technologies exist today
  • Improved carbon sinks
    •  Reduced deforestation and improved forest management and planting of new forests
    •  Bio-energy with carbon capture and storage
  • Lifestyle and behavioural changes – that is, for humanity to adopt more sustainable practices

 David’s talk, the 2nd in a Speaker Series was funded by the Foundation for Rural Renewal.  A video of his talk, together with his presentation slides will shortly be available on the Centre’s website (www.ywatercentre.com.au). 

Keep an eye out for the third Specialist talk in the Speaker Series early in 2020!

 

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