The changes in the marine domains of India and Australia are affecting the circulation patterns, distribution and abundance of marine species in the two countries, said Stewart Frusher, Associate Professor, Institute of Marine and Antarctic Studies, University of Tasmania, Australia.

Speaking at the inaugural session of the international workshop on preparing for climate change on marine systems in India and Australia here on Tuesday, Mr. Frusher said that such changes were also impacting the marine industries and associated communities.

Enhancing the marine production systems to meet the needs of a growing global population, mitigating the carbon footprint and sequestering carbon are the challenges before the countries. To tackle issues as broad and important as climate change, one needs to understand both the biological and physical systems.

The gradual changes in ocean currents, rising sea levels and acidification of the oceans and increased frequency of extreme events such as cyclones, storms and rainfall are also matters of concern.

The response of marine resources and biodiversity to these changes is also important, he said.

In his address, Michael Carter, the Consul Commercial and Trade Commissioner of Australia at Chennai, said that Australia's approach to climate change was based on reduction of green house gas emissions, adapting to climate change and helping to shape a global solution to the issue.

Australia is moving to a cleaner economy which is sustainable, competitive and able to withstand the challenges of climate change.

The country is committed to reduce its emissions by 60 per cent by 2050, he said.

G. Syda Rao, director of the Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute, Kochi, presided. E. Vivekanandan, scientist-in-charge, of the Chennai research centre of the institute welcomed the gathering and T.V. Sathianadan, Head-in-Charge FRA division of the institute proposed a vote of thanks.

The workshop proposes to use “an objective qualitative modelling approach to determine the vulnerability of key commercial species to climate change.”Collaborative research projects covering oceanography, biology, social science, economics and governance disciplines as well as inter-disciplinary approaches will also be developed.

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