Combating Climate Change

The SOWN Climate Action Working Group commenced in October 2021 in response to objectives in the SOWN Enoggera Catchment Plan, in particular, ‘to respond to the impacts of climate change’.

Initially the group explored climate change responses in terms of  adaption, mitigation, communication and education. To gain additional inspiration the group investigated the viability of partnerships with research institutions.

Dr John Dwyer of the University of Queensland accepted the group’s invitation to speak on ‘Ecology and Catchments in a Changing Climate‘ on 24 November 2021. The evening addressed topics from climate projections in the area, genetic diversity and provenancing and also the role of urban forests to mitigate urban heat island affects, sequester carbon and increase biodiversity. Link to report on that event including tools and references.

Following from these insights, we are looking forward to inviting Dr John Dwyer back to design some good experiments to test the resilience of our catchment to climate change.

Our forward plan

In the meantime, the working group has identified the likely impacts of climate change in our catchments, the vulnerable ecosystems and the current local and global drivers to support change.

Working towards taking action, the Working Group has identified five key priority actions:

  • Preparing lists of climate-ready plants
  • Member and community eduction
  • Planting for climate resilience
  • Defining natural carbon sinks
  • Research plot trails

We aim to begin the journey with identifying climate resilient plants with the regional ecosystem planting lists and then expanding our knowledge to plant resilient species by looking at the whole picture and the connections with soil and fungi.

Ultimately our ambition will lead us to design experiments and establish plots in which we can monitor and measure climate resilience in plants.

See below for an overview of our plan so far. Click here to download a PDF.

SOWN President Renee McGlashan with Dr John Dwyer, School of Biological Science, University of Queensland. PHOTO: Anne Jones

The Working Group will look at the whole picture including the connections to soil and fungi. PHOTO: Anne Jones