The times, they are a changing

: Migratory shorebirds depend upon intertidal habitats here in Australia and overseas. This issue of Decision Point examines threats and opportunities for our intertidal spaces. (Photo by Rob Clemens)

Migratory shorebirds depend upon intertidal habitats here in Australia and overseas. This issue of Decision Point examines threats and opportunities for our intertidal spaces. (Photo by Rob Clemens)

Come gather ‘round people
Wherever you roam
And admit that the waters
Around you have grown
And accept it that soon
You’ll be drenched to the bone…

These lyrics, which open Bob Dylan’s classic song ‘the times, they are a changin’, might be a chorus for climate change. However, I they also resonate with several themes explored in this issue of Decision Point.

The first is that, indeed, the waters really have grown. Sea level rise, caused by climate change, is happening and that means we need to reflect on the many values of the ecosystems that exist on the ocean fringe, and develop frameworks for how we will manage these ecosystems into the future. Towards that end we have stories on intertidal habitats around Australia (p4), multiple ecosystem services from mangroves in Fiji (p5) and using payments for ecosystem services to preserve wetlands around Moreton Bay (p10).

The second theme is the changing face of conservation where increasing focus is being placed on conservation on private land (and especially farmland). We discuss the permanency of conservation covenants (p12), trade offs in developing agriculture in northern Australia (p14), restoring creeks and house values (p18), and a new CEED text book on designing agri-environment policy (p16).

And the third theme relates to changes in CEED itself. Being a dynamic network, people are always joining and leaving CEED. We normally don’t make too much fuss about these movements as it’s the nature of a research network. However, four of our early- to mid- career researchers have just taken up posts in the UK so we thought we should get them to tell us what they think about CEED. Read their stories on page 19.

Also leaving us are Karen Gillow and Michelle Baker, who have both provided invaluable support to CEED and me in putting out Decision Point. Karen has been assisting since issue #1 and Michelle was the architect of our Decision Point online site and many of the design tweaks in this issue. Thanks heaps Karen and Michelle.

But possibly the biggest change to note is the departure of our Director, Hugh Possingham (who is leaving to become the Chief Scientist at the TNC, see p3). Hugh has been a passionate supporter of Decision Point since its inception and has provided some ripper editorials during its life. I’ve listed my top three Possingham editorials (with links) next to his final word on page 3. They’re worth rereading if you have a moment.

David Salt


 

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