Photo of CSIRO diver surveying fish on the bottom of the ocean floor at Ningaloo Reef, Western Australia.

A CSIRO diver conducting a fish survey on Ningaloo Reef.

Unique partnership to examine Australia’s western oceans

Reference: 07/88

A new $A21 million, five-year research collaboration was announced today in Western Australia that will increase understanding and improve management of the oceans to Australia’s west.

  • 18 May 2007

The WA Premier, the Hon Alan Carpenter, launched the Western Australian Marine Science Institution (WAMSI) today at the State’s Maritime Museum, in Fremantle.

In a unique collaborative venture, WAMSI brings together 14 partners, including Federal and State Government agencies, universities and industry, to address one of the major challenges facing us today – the conservation and sustainable management of WA’s marine environment resources, in some of the most important areas of Australia's vast ocean domain.

“The Acting Director of the Wealth from Oceans Flagship, Mr John Gunn, said this landmark partnership points the way to the kind of collaboration that is essential to the sustainable development of our large and diverse ocean resources.”

WAMSI brings together the capabilities of a wide range of research partners, including CSIRO's Wealth from Oceans National Research Flagship, the Australian Institute of Marine Science, the Bureau of Meteorology, Curtin University of Technology, Edith Cowan University, Murdoch University, The University of Western Australia, the Western Australian Museum, Western Australian Global Ocean Observing Systems Inc and WA’s Department of Environment and Conservation, Department of Fisheries and Department of Industry and Resources.

CSIRO’s Dr Greg Ayers, a WAMSI Board member, said this is an exceptional opportunity to draw together the capabilities of the country’s leading research organisations. “WAMSI brings significant Federal expertise and research resources to the State, particularly leading national research bodies such as CSIRO’s Wealth from Oceans Flagship, the Australian Institute of Marine Science and the Bureau of Meteorology.”

The Acting Director of the Wealth from Oceans Flagship, Mr John Gunn, said this landmark partnership points the way to the kind of collaboration that is essential to the sustainable development of our large and diverse ocean resources.

“The strength of the WAMSI partnership is in its unique structure. For the first time our national and state research bodies have joined forces to deliver an exciting marine science capability,” Mr Gunn said. “This integrated approach and the strength of research partnership, will deliver real value to WA and the nation.”

A primary research focus of CSIRO’s Wealth from Oceans Flagship is the sustainable multiple-use development of Australia’s coastal and marine regions, with a strong emphasis on the science of marine ecosystem dynamics. “The Flagship is implementing a new approach to achieving sustainable economic and social benefits from ocean-based development, including the development of integrated information systems and predictive planning tools,” Mr Gunn said.

“By taking a systems view of the many human uses of our ecosystems, we are developing a new strategy towards marine and coastal management and the science that guides it. Western Australia and WAMSI are very important partners for the Flagship as we seek to have these scientific tools implemented and having impact on Australia’s marine and coastal systems.”

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