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Media Release
Australian Minister for the Environment and Heritage
Senator the Hon. Ian Campbell

16 November 2006

Australia and the United States take more climate change action


Australia and the United States will work together on five new projects to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture, accelerate the development of carbon storage technologies, and help Pacific Island countries adapt to climate change, the Minister for the Environment and Heritage, Senator Ian Campbell, said today.

Announcing the projects in Nairobi with United States Under Secretary of State Paula Dobriansky, Senator Campbell said the projects would build on the extensive range of actions already being undertaken as part of the Australia-U.S. Climate Action Partnership (CAP).

“Three of these new projects will make a big difference to Pacific Island Countries’ ability to deal with climate change,” Senator Campbell said.

“For example, one project will develop a tropical cyclone database and improve understanding of the impact of climate change on extreme weather events in the South Pacific, South Indian, and Australian regions.

“Another of the new projects will help Australia and the United States reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve farm productivity by increasing the carbon stored in agricultural soils.

“The projects demonstrate that Australia and the U.S. are responding very practically to the challenge of climate change and are also providing support to developing countries in our region.”

The Climate Action Partnership was first established in 2002 and now includes 32 projects and activities. These projects relate to measuring and accounting for emissions, improving scientific understanding, supporting low-emission technology, engaging business, and improving forestry and agriculture practices.

Senator Campbell said the projects would extend Australia’s programme of practical action, which runs side-by-side with its involvement in the United Nations Climate Change Convention.

“At the same time as we push for a truly global response through the UN Framework, Australia is demonstrating international and regional leadership by taking practical actions. As well as taking action through bilateral partnerships such as the CAP, we have already contributed $60 million to more than 40 projects under the Asia-Pacific Partnership on Clean Development and Climate that will help develop the low-emission technologies the world needs.

“The Australian Government is more interested in taking real action than in simple slogans. Climate change is a serious problem that requires a ‘multi-track’ approach and we will continue to take action through a range of international forums.”

Media contact:
Rob Broadfield on 02 6277 7640 or 0418 568 434


Media backgrounder

Project: Climate Change and South Hemisphere Tropical Cyclones

What:

Climate Change Benefits:

Who:

Australian Government’s Bureau of Meteorology, U.S. Government’s National Climatic Data Centre, and New Zealand’s National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research Ltd.

Project: Building Robust and Reliable Data Monitoring Infrastructure for Climate Change Monitoring

What:

Climate Change Benefits:

Who:

Australian Government’s Bureau of Meteorology, U.S. Government’s National Climatic Data Centre, and New Zealand’s National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research.

Project: Cooperation on Geosequestration

What:

Benefits:

Who:

The United States Environmental Protection Agency (Office of Atmosphere and Radiation) and the Australian Government’s Department of the Environment and Heritage (Australian Greenhouse Office).

Project: Whole Farm Emission Tradeoffs

What:

Benefits:

Who:

Australian Government’s Department of the Environment and Heritage (Australian Greenhouse Office) and the United States Consortium for Agricultural Soils Mitigation of Greenhouse Gases, a consortium of nine universities and the Pacific North West National Laboratory.

Project: Pacific Biodiversity Information Forum

What:

Benefits:

Who:

Australian Government’s Department of the Environment and Heritage (Australian National Botanic Gardens) and the U.S. Department of the Interior United States Geological Survey.

Commonwealth of Australia