Call for Citizen's Panel

Ad: Call for Citizen's Panel
Featured in The Weekend Australian 5-6 April

A call to action to address sea level rise in the Asia Pacific


Green Cross Australia and Griffith University seek twelve members of the public to participate in Australia’s 2008 consensus conference: A People’s Assembly - Sea level rise and population displacement in the Asia Pacific.


Warming seas, melting glaciers and retreating ocean ice are causing sea levels to rise. Sea levels rose by 1.8mm a year in the 1970s. Currently they are rising at 3.3mm a year, according to the latest scientific research.


If this trend continues, scientists predict our seas could rise by one metre by 2100. But if melting ice sheets destabilise Antarctic ice shelves, NASA research indicates that sea levels could rise by more than five metres, with catastrophic consequences.

How should Australia respond to the humanitarian risks of sea level rise? The People’s Assembly will build an informed citizens’ consensus about how governments, business and communities should prepare for the challenges that lie ahead.

Professor Ian O'Connor, Griffith University Vice Chancellor, commented that the People's Assembly would give a voice to concerned Australians from all walks of life. "Rising sea levels will combine with other climate change impacts to threaten people's livelihoods and well-being. How we respond and adapt to these changes is of critical importance," he said.

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change estimates that a one metre sea level rise would displace 145 million people from their homes, mostly in the Asia Pacific.

“Sea level rise will hit our region hard. Low-lying Pacific islands, such as Tuvalu and Kiribati may gradually disappear,” says Mara Bún, Green Cross Australia CEO. “Large populations closely packed together near the coast in cities such as Dhaka, Shanghai, Jakarta, Singapore, Tokyo, Mumbai and Bangkok could be displaced. Major river deltas in Vietnam, China, Thailand and the Philippines are at risk. More than 80% of Australians live and work within 50 kilometres of our magnificent, eroding beaches.”

“Rising sea levels will combine with other climate change impacts to pose a grim threat to communities in the Asia Pacific,” says Professor Jan McDonald, Griffith University. “Access to clean water will change along with rainfall patterns; there will be great risk of illness due to heat stress, malnutrition, and the spread of infectious diseases such as malaria and dengue fever.”

Green Cross Australia and Griffith University seek twelve interested people to participate in the People’s Assembly; a randomly selected group that represents Australia’s diversity. The Citizen’s Panel will engage with leaders from environmental, human rights, insurance, infrastructure, security and overseas aid organisations in order to form a view about how we should prepare. Conference outcomes will contribute to government, community and business long-term planning.


How to nominate for the People’s Assembly Citizen’s Panel


To join the Citizen’s Panel participants need to be in Queensland 6-8 June, 18-20 July and 28-30 August, 2008. Cost of travel expenses and accommodation will be covered; a modest daily allowance will be provided. To nominate for the People’s Assembly Citizen’s Panel, follow the links at: www.greencrossaustralia.org

For more information please contact:
Mara Bún
Green Cross Australia
P: 07 3003 0644  |   M : 0448 848 860  |  E: mara@greencrossaustralia.org  Error parsing XSLT file: \xslt\MoreInformation-Content.xslt

Copyright © Green Cross Australia | Terms & Conditions | Privacy Policy
web design brisbane :: (zero)seven