Australian Academy of Science Newsletter 154

Australian Academy of Science Newsletter September 2021 Number 153

Anna-Maria Arabia

Message from the Chief Executive

November is shaping up to be a huge month, as Australia and the world prepare for the UN’s COP26 meeting in Glasgow.

New climate change hub to be a trusted source of climate science and solutions

In the lead-up to COP26, the Academy has launched its climate change hub—a single point of climate resources for policymakers, researchers and the public.

Statement from the President—Government’s net zero 2050 announcement

This will be an incredibly complex undertaking that will require coordination across sectors and mechanisms to stimulate technology development at scale.

Our most vulnerable risk being left behind as Australia adapts to climate change

Is Australia’s current approach to climate adaptation sustainable and equitable?

Draft NSW Government park management plan ‘flawed’ and ignores damage caused by feral horses

An open letter to the NSW Environment Minister published today calls on the NSW Government to work towards removing all feral horses from every NSW protected area.

Report: Advancing Data-Intensive Research in Australia

This report presents findings from consultations with the research community on the challenges and opportunities of data-intensive research in Australia.

Academy condemns trolling, bullying and harassment of scientists simply for doing their job

A new survey has found one in five Australian scientists experienced threats of physical or sexual violence after speaking to the media about COVID-19.

Team responsible for cancer research breakthrough wins Eureka Award

Academy Fellow Professor Justin Gooding led the team which has been awarded the Eureka Prize for Innovative use of Technology.

Moran Award to help study history of mining toxicity and environmental justice

Dr Lilian Pearce from the Centre for the Study of the Inland at La Trobe University is the recipient of the Academy’s 2022 Moran Award for History of Science Research.

The 2021 science Nobel Prizes: Academy Fellows respond

Here’s how some of the Academy’s Fellows responded to the announcement of the Nobel Prizes for science.

Celebrating amazing science and awardees

This year, several Academy awards ceremonies were organised at Government Houses across the country.

AIATSIS and ACOLA agree on inclusion of Indigenous knowledge

The Australian Council of Learned Academies (ACOLA) and the Aboriginal Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies (AIATSIS) have announced they have entered into a Memorandum of Understanding.

World Day for Audiovisual Heritage 2021

For more than 20 years, the Australian Academy of Science has documented the remarkable stories of Australian Science.

New videos and articles


Microplastics and climate change

Microplastics aren’t just polluting our oceans. Researchers have found for the first time that they may even influence climate change, much like greenhouse gases.



High blood pressure on the rise globally

It’s known as a silent disease because almost half of people with high blood pressure (AKA hypertension) don’t realise they have it.

How science can stop mosquitoes

A new study shows that a mozzie-specific bacterium can be used to sterilise mosquitoes, and in turn reduce their population.

Lethal seahorses

Forget sharks, seahorses are some of the most effective predators in the ocean.

Losing sleep over daylight savings?

How does the big switch affect our body clocks and our sleep?

What causes tropical cyclones?

Professor Liz Ritchie-Tyo from UNSW Canberra explains how these destructive storms are formed.

What causes rainbows?

Sunlight and water droplets come together to cause this optical illusion.


Climate change: the facts

Find the Academy's climate-related science content in one place.

In brief

Position Statements

Submissions to government

Opportunities for scientists

Find out more about coming opportunities for scientists:

  • Mike Smith Student Prize for History of Australian Science or Australian Environmental History
  • Japan Society for the Promotion of Science fellowships
  • Indigenous STEM Awards 
  • Albert Einstein World Award of Science
  • José Vasconcelos Award  
  • Kavli Prizes  
  • A.M. Turing Award
  • Gruber Prizes  
  • The Volvo Environment Prize     
  • Lefoulon-Delalande Grand Prize

Fellows update

Keep abreast of the Academy Fellowship in the Fellows update​:

  • Honours and awards to Fellows

Science at the Shine Dome: New Fellows Presentations

3 and 4 November

Fellows elected in 2020 and 2021 will present their work and achievements, with 10 minutes presentations aimed at a general audience followed by a live Q&A session. This is a unique opportunity to hear about the work of our leading scientists from a wide range of disciplines and ask your own questions.

This event is part of the Science at the Shine Dome 2021 series, and is made possible by our event partners.

Register for Day 1 and Day 2.

The long journey of human missions to Mars and back to Earth

15 November

Five amazing scientists will discuss the challenges of travelling across space, preparing for human missions to Mars, and what we can learn for life and sustainability on Earth.

Register here.

Science Pathways 2021: Sustainable careers

November 25 – December 10

At Science Pathways 2021: Sustainable careers, the EMCR Forum will facilitate thought-provoking and engaging discussions around what EMCRs need for their careers to be sustainable. Featuring:

  • discussions around the future of work for researchers in academia, industry, and government,
  • managing work-life responsibilities.
  • looking after our mental health,
  • and building a more inclusive STEM sector.

Register here.


The Honorary editor of the Academy newsletter is Professor Yuri Estrin FAA


© 2022 Australian Academy of Science