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Tuesday, April 22, 2014

The challenge of adapting to climate change and heatwaves in Melbourne

Originally published at Mpress at Melbourne Polytechnic

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Working Group II in its latest report – Climate Change 2014: Impacts, Adaptation, and Vulnerability - highlights the growing impact of climate change both globally and regionally. Resolving the climate change issue requires action by individuals, businesses and all levels of Government in Australia and globally.

Professor Glenn Albrecht, Director of the Institute for Social Sustainability at Murdoch University, WA commented on the IPCC report "The messages in the IPCC Working Group 2 Summary for Policymakers are clear, we need to remove the barriers for political change away from fossil fuel dependency. We must make a rapid transition to non-polluting renewable forms of energy. At the same time we need to acknowledge the urgent need to adapt to the changes we have already imposed upon ourselves."

The challenge also involves educating for sustainability, whether in school programs, TAFE or University.

NMIT has been developing a strong focus on sustainability in our education programs, whether in the Diploma of Sustainability, courses in Renewable Energy, Aquaculture and Environmental Management, Horticulture, Conservation and Land Management, the Bachelor of Accounting course with a strong focus on environmental accounting, or more traditional trade courses in building and engineering design.  The Green Skills Centre of Excellence on Epping Campus, completed in 2010, provides facilities for teaching many of our practical skill-based courses with a sustainability component.

Liberal Arts courses also offer the opportunity to discuss and research the challenges of climate change. NMIT website administrator and Tertiary Studies student and blogger made a presentation and handout to his Academic Research class in March 2014 that outlines some of the recent science and the many challenges we face in Melbourne with heatwaves and climate change. The views expressed in this article are his own, and do not necessarily reflect endorsement by NMIT.