Independent Report to the Commonwealth Minister for the Environment and Heritage
Australian State of the Environment Committee, Authors
CSIRO Publishing on behalf of the Department of the Environment and Heritage, 2001
ISBN 0 643 06745 0
The members of the Committee are:
Professor Bruce Thom (Chair), Director, Thombolo Pty Ltd and Chair of the Coastal Council of NSW, Emeritus Professor University of Sydney, Visiting Professor University of NSW
Associate Professor Bob Beeton, Head, School of Natural and Rural Systems Management, University of Queensland
Professor Peter Cullen, Director, Co-operative Research Centre for Freshwater Ecology
Ms Wendy McCarthy AO, Executive Director, McCarthy Management Pty Ltd
Mr Bill McLennan CBE, AM, Australian Statistician, Australian Bureau of Statistics (till June 2000)
Dr Libby Mattiske, Director, Mattiske Consulting Pty Ltd and member of the WA Environment Protection Authority
Dr Russell Reichelt, Director, Co-operative Research Centre for the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area incorporated as CRC Reef Research Centre.
Dr Alan Reid AM, Former CSIRO Division Chief. As a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering, he directed the Inquiry into Urban Air Pollution that reported to the Commonwealth Government in 1997.
Dr Gaye Sculthorpe, Head, Department of Indigenous Cultures, Museum Victoria; and Commissioner, Australian Heritage Commission.
Mr Dennis Trewin, Australian Statistician, Australian Bureau of Statistics (from July 2000)
Mr Con Boekel, Assistant Secretary, Environment Information and Technological Strategies Branch, Environment Australia (ex officio member) (from June 2000)
Mr Stewart Needham, Assistant Secretary, Science and the Environment Branch, Environment Australia (ex officio member) (till May 2000)
Mrs Jenny Boshier, Director, State of the Environment Reporting Section (Secretary to Committee) (ex officio member) (from June 2000)
Dr Alex Zapantis, Director, State of the Environment Reporting Section (Secretary to Committee) (ex officio member) (till December 1999)
The terms of reference given to the Committee by Senator the Hon. Robert Hill, Minister for the Environment and Heritage, in February 1999 were as follows.
- Supervise the preparation of the 2001 State of the Environment Report to ensure its scientific credibility, balance, coverage, independence and quality of work. Determine that the detailed structure of the Report is within the established reporting framework and is consistent with the Minister's letter of appointment. Keep the Minister advised on progress and present the completed report to the Minister.
- Prepare the synthesis chapter of the 2001 State of the Environment Report, and determine and communicate its main messages to decision makers and the public.
- Assist in promoting awareness of the 2001 State of the Environment Report to environmental managers, decision makers and the public.
- Evaluate the efficiency of the state of the environment reporting process and the effectiveness of the 2001 State of the Environment Report in communicating to environmental managers, decision makers and the public.
The Committee was asked to concentrate on changes since 1996, to pioneer the use of indicators on a continental scale, and to fill gaps in areas that were not fully covered last time. Also they were asked to build upon the 1996 State of the Environment Report to ensure continuity of the State of the Environment reporting system.
Current (and past) members of the State of the Environment Reporting Section:
John Armstead, Alex Davies, (Jim Derrick), (Geoff Dunn), Belinda Hack, (Gina Newton), Ian Robertson, (Allan Spessa), Gary Whatman and (Andrew Wynberg).
SoE reporting model.
Source: ASEC 1999.
The Committee gratefully thanks the following experts for valuable peer review comments upon this report:
Wendy Craik (Earth Sanctuaries Limited)
Julian Cribb (CSIRO National Awareness)
Ann Hamblin (Bureau of Rural Sciences)
Jane Lennon (Jane Lennon & Associates)
Ian Lowe (Griffith University)
Peter Manins (CSIRO Atmospheric Research)
Steven Mnchenberg (Business Council of Australia)
Peter Newton (CSIRO Building, Construction and Engineering)
Rosemary Purdie (Murray-Darling Basin Commission)
Sharon Sullivan (Sullivan Blazejowski & Associates)
Jan Williams (RMIT University)
David Yencken (University of Melbourne).