NERP TE Project 11.1 - Building resilient communities for Torres Strait futures (CSIRO)

Project summary

This project is exploring potential future scenarios for the Torres Strait and will identify ‘no regrets’ strategies to improve livelihoods and achieve sustainable economic development. The project will help to deliver ongoing initiatives promoting climate adaptation, alternative livelihoods and economic development in the region.

Map of planned development in Papua New Guinea
Mer Island
 

Why this research is needed

The low-lying islands of the Torres Strait are vulnerable to climate change and the region faces a range of pressures including a growing population, future climate change, potential pollution as a result of rapid mining and resources development in Papua New Guinea, and increased shipping. In order to create a sustainable future for the peoples of the Torres Strait, it is important to understand potential future environmental and economic changes and proactively plan for them.

Research-user focus

The project will work with stakeholders to provide important information for planners and other decision-makers in the region. Research users include the Torres Strait Regional Authority, Australian Fisheries Management Authority, the Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities, the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and the Queensland Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry.

Outcomes

  • The main outcome of the project will be the improved capacity of communities and other decision-makers in the Torres Strait to anticipate and respond proactively to future sustainability challenges through:
  • Greater awareness of drivers of change at local and regional scales.
  • Exploration of alternative livelihoods and ‘no regrets’ strategies and policies.
  • Increased capacity to avoid mal-adaptive strategies
  • Development of community-based holistic plans to support adaptation planning for climate change and sustainability challenges.
  • Future-proofing of relevant international, national and regional policies and strategies to ensure sustainable and resilient communities.

Reports, Publications and News

NERP Logo

For more information see Project 11.1 'Building resilient communities for Torres Strait futures'; on the NERP Tropical Ecosystems Hub site.

Photos

Datasets

Publication on
3 September 2014
The low-lying islands of the Torres Strait are vulnerable to climate change and the region faces a range of pressures including a growing population, future climate change, potential pollution as a result of rapid mining and resources development in Papua New Guinea, and increased shipping. Through participatory scenario planning with Torres Strait and PNG communities and stakeholders, informed by integrated ecosystem and climate modelling this project will identify ‘best bet’ strategies to protect livelihoods and achieve sustainable economic development. Tasks include:

Publication on
1 July 2015
PreviewThis dataset consists of rasters representing downscaled climate change scenarios (8 km resolution) for the Torres Strait and Papua New Guinea regions for 1990, 2055, 2090.
Publication on
25 February 2017
PreviewDetermining the impact on Torres Strait communities from future changes to ecosystems requires an understanding of the natural resource base that underpins their livelihoods.