Centre for Tropical Environmental and Sustainability Science (TESS)

James Cook University

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Roadkill on the side of a tropical logging road

The Centre focuses on research in tropical environments and societies across a wide range of disciplines, focusing particularly on northern Australia, Papua New Guinea, Africa, Asia and the Pacific. Research in TESS falls within the following themes: - Ecology, Biodiversity and Conservation - Ecosystem Science - Environmental change and Archeology -Sustainable Landscapes and Livelihoods - Education, Training and Capacity Building. TESS has four new ‘flagship’ projects that attack environmental issues of particularly acute concern and also cut across our thematic areas: Reducing the Global Impacts of Rapid Infrastructure Expansion; Australia’s Northern Development and Imperilled Biodiversity; State of the Tropics: Assessing Key Trends and Challenges; Sustainable Landscapes and Livelihoods in Indonesia. This approach helps us address these key issues from a truly multidisciplinary perspective and to better integrate the wide-ranging talents of TESS’s researchers.

Website https://research.jcu.edu.au/tess

Key science sectors

Strengths and capabilities

  • Protected area and landscape management in tropical terrestrial environments
  • Assessing ecological and physiological responses to environmental change
  • Understanding the drivers of changing patterns of biodiversity
  • Assessing the role of humans in shaping and adapting to environmental change
  • Predicting the trajectories of future environmental change
  • Planning for adaptation to future environmental change
  • Sustainably enhancing food, water and livelihood security across the tropics
  • Reducing human impact on the natural  environment in the tropics
  • Reducing greenhouse gas emissions and enhancing carbon sequestration potential
  • Researching interactions between societies, economies and the environment

Facilities and major equipment

  • The Daintree Rainforest Observatory (DRO)
  • The Orpheus Island Research Station
  • Fletcherview Research Station
  • Cloncurry Research Station 
  • Terrestrial Ecosystem Research Network FNQ Supersite
  • The Australian Tropical Herbarium
  • Advanced Analytical Centre (Cairns and Townsville) 
  • Dendrochronology Laboratory 
  • Hydrology Laboratory
  • Soils, GIS and Climatology Laboratories

Number of research staff

20-100 research staff

Address

Building A2, James Cook University, 14-88 Macgregor Road, Smithfield, 4870

Lead researchers

Organisation type

  • University Research Centre

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