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Media Release
Senator the Hon Robert Hill
Leader of the Government in the Senate
Minister for the Environment and Heritage

28 February 2001

Industry leaders to hear the latest on climate change science

Australia's climate change experts will present the latest international findings on climate change science to a forum of industry leaders in Melbourne today.

Federal Environment Minister Robert Hill said it was important that industry had the latest international information on climate change so it was equipped to take a key role in meeting the challenge of global warming.

"The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report, Climate Change 2001: the Scientific Basis, highlights new and stronger evidence that humans are having an influence on the global climate through greenhouse gas emissions," Senator Hill said.

Amongst the report's key findings - based on the observational record, is that the climate has warmed by 0.6 degrees Celsius over the 20th Century. The report also projects that, depending on the level of future greenhouse gas emissions, globally averaged surface temperature will increase between 1.4 and 5.8 degrees Celsius over the next 100 years.

"The second IPCC report, Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability, highlights the need for governments and industry throughout the world to take adaptive action to reduce, where possible, the impacts of climate change," Senator Hill said.

"Industry, as well as Government, need to be thinking about adaptive responses that will complement their efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

"The Government is working in partnership with industry through programs such as the voluntary Greenhouse Challenge to reduce greenhouse emissions. Over 45 per cent of Australia's total industrial emissions are covered by agreements under the Greenhouse Challenge.

"The Commonwealth and the States and Territories are working together to combat global warming through the National Greenhouse Strategy.

"The Government's $1 billion climate change package includes measures to boost renewable energy and energy efficiency as well as promoting sustainable transport and land management."

The forum, The Science of Climate Change and its Effects, will focus on the reports recently released by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) which highlight the current state of knowledge on climate change and its effects on natural and human systems.

Hundreds of leading experts worldwide were involved in assembling the reports, including a number of Australian scientists who will lead today's forum. The Forum will be hosted by the Principal Delegate of Australia to the IPCC, Dr John Zillman from the Bureau of Meteorology and facilitated by Mr Oleg Morozow from Santos Pty Ltd.

The forum is being held at the Colonial Stadium's Endeavour Room today, Wednesday February 28, starting at 8.30am and finishing at 1pm. Media are welcome to attend.

Media contact: Belinda Huppatz (02) 6277 7640 or 0419 258 364

Commonwealth of Australia