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Projected climate change in Australian marine and freshwater environments


Hobday, AJ and Lough, JM, Projected climate change in Australian marine and freshwater environments, Marine and Freshwater Research, 62, (9) pp. 1000-1014. ISSN 1323-1650 (2011) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2011 CSIRO

DOI: doi:10.1071/MF10302


Changes in the physical environment of aquatic systems consistent with climate change have been reported across Australia, with impacts on many marine and freshwater species. The future state of aquatic environments can be estimated by extrapolation of historical trends. However, because the climate is a complex non-linear system, a more process-based approach is probably required, in particular the use of dynamical projections using climate models. Because global climate models operate on spatial scales that typically are too coarse for aquatic biologists, statistical or dynamical downscaling of model output is proposed. Challenges in using climate projections exist; however, projections for some marine and freshwater systems are possible. Higher oceanic temperatures are projected around Australia, particularly for south-eastern Australia. The East Australia Current is projected to transport greater volumes of water southward, whereas the Leeuwin Current on the western coast may weaken. On land, projections suggest that air temperatures will rise and rainfall will decline across much of Australia in coming decades. Together, these changes will result in reduced runoff and hence reduced stream flow and lake storage. Present climate models are particularly limited with regard to coastal and freshwater systems, making the models challenging to use for biological-impact and adaptation studies.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:climate-change impacts, freshwater fishes, future climate scenarios, global climate model, marine fishes
Research Division:Environmental Sciences
Research Group:Environmental management
Research Field:Conservation and biodiversity
Objective Division:Environmental Management
Objective Group:Other environmental management
Objective Field:Other environmental management not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Hobday, AJ (Dr Alistair Hobday)
ID Code:119728
Year Published:2011
Web of Science® Times Cited:219
Deposited By:Ecology and Biodiversity
Deposited On:2017-08-04
Last Modified:2017-10-16

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