University of Sydney launches new Centre for Carbon, Water and Food, China to participate

Posted by AFN Staff Writers on 6th March 2013

The University of Sydney will today launch a $20 million multidisciplinary research centre dedicated to tackling problems of food security and environmental challenges in Australia and the surrounding region.

The Centre for Carbon, Water and Food, funded by the Federal Government and the University of Sydney, will be launched at a major event at the Centre’s new site in the south western Sydney suburb of Camden.

The Centre has already attracted international interest. Two agreements with leading Chinese institutions will be signed at the opening event.

The collaboration between Australia and China follows several decades of collaboration between University of Sydney researchers and Chinese colleagues from a number of institutions.

The University says its collaborative work with Chinese institutions through the new Centre also follows on from ‘Feeding the Future’, a December 2012 report from the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. The report identified China and Australia as potential partners to ease growing pressure on food supplies.

In 2010, the Prime Minister’s Science Engineering and Innovation Council recommended that national priority be given to understanding and mapping connections between energy, water, carbon, climate, agriculture, ecosystems, the economy and society in order to ensure Australia’s future food security and its ability to remain resilient in the face of future climate volatility.

The University says the Centre for Carbon, Water and Food will meet this need, as well as positioning Australia as a regional leader in food production and land management.

The news of the new Centre follows an earlier report by Australian Food News in May 2012 that Professor Chris Barrett from Cornell University had proposed an Australian multidisciplinary response to the challenges of climate change for agriculture and the food industry when he gave a talk at the University of Sydney that month.

The University of Sydney