Publications
Beach change on Stanwell Park beach has been linked to sea-level fluctuations and annual rainfall such that a 1-cm rise in sea-level and a 100-mm increase in rainfall results respectively in 0.45m and 0.8m of beach retreat. Both variables are related to the Southern Oscillation, which has worldwide climatic teleconnections. Research in NSW and elsewhere indicates that the 11- and 22-year sunspot cycles and 18.6-year MN lunar cycle may affect some sea-level and rainfall records. None of these astronomical variables was found to relate to beach retreat at Stanwell Park more than any of the meteorological or oceanographic variables.
 
Between 1980 and 1982 much of Australia was surveyed from the air to estimate density and distribution of kangaroos. The area surveyed covered 5.8 million square kilometres (75% of Australia) and included most of the distribution of the three commercial species. Numbers were estimated as 8.3 million red kangaroos, Macropus rufus, 1.8 million western grey kangaroos, M. fuliginosus, and 5.0 million eastern grey kangaroos, M. giganteus. The unsurveyed eastern highlands probably hold a further 4 million eastern greys, allowing a tentative overall estimate for 1981 of 19 million kangaroos in mainland Australia. (Note added in February 2005: Because of revised correction factors, particularly for both species of grey kangaroos, it is now known that these values are under-estimates.)
 
The Huon Peninsula record has been widely cited, but needs revision. This paper adds new data to the previously published information, giving a new sea-level curve for the last 340ka. Results covering the last 136ka in particular are more detailed than those available previously. -from Author
 
Fallout caesium-137 has been used to determine depths of sedimentation in two alluvial fans and a farm dam in a small drainage basin at Pokolbin, NSW. The sediment is derived mainly from the erosion of adjacent vineyard soils, first cultivated in 1970. Sedimentological evidence and a record of cultivation history have confirmed the Cs-137 results.-Authors
 
In this paper, we trace the public debate, principally as it appeared in the local press, of the woodchip industry in the Eden and Bega districts. It was the debate as published in the mass media, rather than the various official reports, which influenced public opinions and moulded community attitudes to the conflict. The historical perspective gained from a study of the development of the debate is useful in identifying issues of enduring concern to participants and in formulating proposals that will minimise the conflict. -from Authors
 
This analysis of news items provides a comprehensive review of the environmental concerns and issues of 1978. The data show what environmental areas concerned which persons or institutions, what issues were regarded as important and what policy measures were advocated. Mining, energy and land rights dominated, while natural disasters occupied a significant portion of the environmental news space. The major issues were the need to change levels of production and the detrimental side-effects of production. Individuals appeared more interested in the welfare conseqences of resource use than did governments; all groups ignored population trends. -Author
 
Examines the relationships between mineral extraction rates and conditions in the market for financial assets. Considers arguments concerning regulation of financial markets (which appears to be diminishing) and of mineral development. Concludes that the case for maintaining a high degree of resource regulation is not compelling. However, federal and state governments should coordinate their resources policies so that prices reflect economic costs. -Author
 
1982 was a year of severe drought over much of eastern and northern Australia. No presently-available long-range forecast method could have predicted the start of the drought. However, by about June the continuation of the drought throughout late winter and spring could have been expected, using long-range forecast methods first documented over fifty years ago and recently verified on independent data.-from Author
 
Aborigines have occupied southwestern Australia for at least 33 000 years, and have left numerous artifact sites containing abundant flakes, and some large stone implements. The chert has two sources: a western provenance, inundated by rising Flandrian seas, and a southeastern provenance that largely escaped inundation. -Andrew Simmonds
 
Light is thrown on two unsolved geological questions on the origin of the Great Barrier Reef. Reinterpretation of borehole data and new data indicate that the Holocene reefs are relatively thin and that growth has occurred on a surface older than 30 000 yr BP. Growth rate varies, but tends to start and end slowly with a period of rapid growth in between. Departures from an idealised growth curve indicate anomalous conditions. Growth rates tend to lag behind rates of sea level rise. - Andrew Simmonds
 
A sharp increase in Pb content was observed in soils immediately adjacent to the freeway, the Pb being immobilised in the top few centimeters of the soil. Lead content of soils further removed from the freeway showed a significant increase above background levels. The distribution of Pb was influenced by prevailing winds and the size of vegetation at the sites. -from Authors
 
Accumulations of diatoms of the genera Anaulus and Asterionella are recorded from high-energy surf zones in southwestern and south Australia respectively. This is the first record of surf diatom accumulations found on the coast of mainland Australia. The relationship between the diatom accumulations and surf zone morphodynamics and circulation is discussed.-Authors
 
This paper was written in response to criticisms published in Search of the work being done at the IMPACT Project on the economic implications of tehnical change. The criticisms appear to be based on misunderstandings of various IMPACT papers. Here we give an elementary account of the theory underlying our work. The results achieved so far are summarised. Finally, we answer cirticisms on a point-by-point basis.- Authors
 
Uneven-aged eucalypt forests used for pulpwood extraction are generally clearfelled. This method is not necessary to induce regeneration. Clearfelling may be less expensive in the short term, but will result in a medium-term loss of sawlog, may be unsuited to extreme sites, may not be a more productive system than selection, and is likely to have more severe edaphic, aesthetic and biotic impact than selection. There may be a greater potential loss of productivity to wild fire with clearfelling than with selective systems. -from Authors
 
Samples from six igneous rock units of the S and SW Coalfields (Sydney Basin) of New Wales have been dated using the K-Ar radiometric technique. The following ages were determined: a dolerite from Towradgi, 243+-10 MY; a dolerite from a diamond- drill hole at Sutton Forest, 202+-8 MY; the Bong Bong Basalt, 190+-8 MY; the Good Dog Lamprophyre, 101+-4 MY; a teschenite from S Bulli coal mine 74.0+-3.6 MY; and a dolerite from Robertson, 63.8+-3.2 MY. Combination of these new ages with previously-published ages indicates that igneous activity in the S and SW Coalfields occurred during four discrete periods of time - Middle-to-Late Permian; Late Triassic to Early Jurassic; mid-Cretaceous (only the Good Dog Lamprophyre has yielded such an age); and latest Cretaceous to Late Oligocene.-Authors
 
K-Ar ages of 20-50 M yr determined for basalts in the Crookwell-Goulburn area provide new evidence of the great age of land surfaces in the E highlands. The main plateau surface dates at least from the Eocene, and the most valley cutting had occurred by the beginning of the Miocene.-Authors
 
The Laser Airborne Depth Sounder (LADS), developed in 1993, has been used to survey shallow areas of the Great Barrier Reef which were inaccessible to survey ships. The system uses a green laser pulse in an optical radar mode from an aircraft to measure the depth of the water column. The position of each sounding is fixed using GPS and a downward-looking video is used to verify the position accuracy of the system. -after Authors
 
Alluvial benches along the middle reaches of the Macleay River have undulating long profiles and appear to have been formed by massive deposition during high magnitude floods. The flood-frequency curve for this river, like those for other N.S.W. coastal rivers, is uncommonly steep, indicating that floods of catastrophic magnitude occur relatively frequently. In such areas, there is insufficient time between catastrophic floods for alluvial landforms to readjust to floods of lesser magnitude, and many, if not most, alluvial landforms might be expected to be formed by, and adjusted to, catastrophic floods. - Authors
 
There is evidence for 'ancestral' river systems draining the catchment of the Great Dividing Range in the east as early as the Eocene, and the Mt. Lofty-Olary Arc in the west and north as early as the mid-Paleocene, but in the absence of geological evidence, the authors cannot accept the hypothesis that these systems at any time crossed the Mt. Lofty Ranges to the Spenser Gulf region; the geological evidence from Tertiary paleogeography and from the most probable age of the sediments of the Broughton 'delta' makes this unlikely.-A.Simmonds
 
At a site near Sydney the rate of ant mounding was 841 g/m2/yr, whereas the rate of earthworm casting was 133 g/m2/yr. The activity of these 2 meso-fauna types is very seasonal, with the ants most active in spring, summer and autumn and the earthworms most active in winter. The turnover period for the upper 30cm of soil is 430 yrs. This is a higher rate than is normally estimated for insects, but is lower than that due to earthworms in some environments.-Author
 
Issues of political jurisdiction and the conservation or development of Antarctic resources are in the end essentially human problems. There are growing pressures to widen the involvement of nations and interest groups in decision-making; it is no longer acceptable to leave policy formation almost entirely to a select band of scientists and diplomats. This implies a growing role for social scientists skilled in dealing with matters relating to policy analysis, administrative organisation, law, economics, geography and sociology. Conflict between natural scientists and social scientists must be avoided; in alliance both groups can play a significant role in determining the future of Antarctica. -Author
 
The article reviews several types of satellite orbit and their usefulness for Antarctic studies. Polar orbits pass directly over the South Pole, while sun-synchronous orbits can cover most of the polar region. Satellites are invaluable because they reveal areas that are accessible only with extreme difficulty at the surface, and provide valuable information on sea-ice conditions. A feasibility study for the launching of a Data Relay Satellite to relay data direct to receivers in Australia is described. -A.Simmonds
 
A preliminary report on attempts to model change in a Third World village society. Finds that a model taken from the physical sciences proves to be applicable. In the future it is hoped to investigate the implications of this model and the values of the rate constants in greater depth. -Authors
 
Top-cited authors
John Chappell
  • Australian National University
Albert Barrie Pittock
  • CSIRO Marine And Atmospheric Research
John S. I. Ingram
  • University of Oxford
George Koch
  • Northern Arizona University
Will Steffen
  • Australian National University