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CLIMATE CHANGE, ENERGY USE AND SUSTAINABILITY
 

Current Projects

Building Strength and Capability Through Diversity
Investigators: Bruce Rasmussen: Celeste Young, and Roger Jones. Research team: Joanne Pyke and Michelle Grossman, VU and Craig Cormick, Creative Director, ThinkOutsideThe
Funded by: Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC
Funding 2017-2019: $480,000
Description: This project will identify relevant strengths throughout the emergency services sector, identify and value the benefits of diversity, and investigate what underlies current organisational behaviour. The research will also develop a guidance framework that supports organisations to undertake such work.
 

Scoping Study: Costs of Climate Change Impacts on the Social Determinants of Health and Wellbeing
Investigators: Roger Jones, Celeste Young, Bruce Rasmussen, Peter Sheehan, Masha Fridman, Kim Sweeny
Funded by: Victorian Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS)
Funding 2017 $180,000
Description: This project will develop a methodology that integrates the impacts of climate change with the social determinants of health and wellbeing and their downstream costs. A systems analysis will combine climate impacts, key areas of interest and a range of economic methods and tools. That analysis will link the cause-and-effect of climate change to key social determinants and the decision-making environment that address the costs of climate change on those determinants. The results will provide a synthesis of existing research, assess levels of evidence and uncertainty, and map agency, presenting the results so that both current findings and future research generated can support decision making.
 

Regional and Sectoral Vulnerability Assessment for Victoria: Phase I
Investigators: Roger Jones, Celeste Young, John Symons
Funded by: Victorian Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP)
Funding 2017 $47,400
Description: Based on a Climate Change Adaptation Directions Paper, the Victorian Government is drafting its second adaptation plan. A key part of that plan aims to reduce vulnerability in priority areas of people in community, environments and livelihoods and the built environment.
This investigation uses an approach which varies from the conventional method of taking the most ‘predictable’ variables, mean temperature and rainfall, and concentrates on the climate-related risks most likely to result in vulnerability. Most are associated with extreme events. The rationale for this approach is to diagnose which areas of vulnerability may require the greatest attention for adaptation planning focused on reducing future damage and loss.
The project is divided into two stages. Phase I involves a rapid update of the recent economic geography and scoping of an expanded assessment. Phase II involves an expanded vulnerability assessment incorporating a wider range of climate risks with higher regional detail in assessing vulnerability as determined by the potential needs of end users of the assessment.
 

Developing Robust Indicators for Valuing Laneway Greening
Investigators: Roger Jones, Celeste Young and John Symons
Funded by: City of Melbourne
Funding 2017: $50,000
Description: This is a collaborative project with the City of Melbourne and Melbourne University which is being led by Victoria University. Its key aim is to work towards the utilization of the economic framework developed previously for the City of Melbourne, through development and testing of key economic indicators as part of the City of Melbourne Laneways project.
 

Provision of Training for Understanding and Applying Risk Ownership to Natural Hazard Risk 
Investigators: Roger Jones and Celeste Young
Funded by: Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC
Funding 2017: $40,000
Description: Risk ownership in strategic decision making is an area of practice in the Emergency Management Services (EMS) and requires building new skills and understandings. As a result training involving face-to-face briefings and workshops is important to support the development of shared understandings and consistent approaches in this area. Three levels of training will be developed to facilitate the uptake of research undertaken by the project Mapping and understanding bushfire and natural hazard vulnerability and risks at the institutional scale.
 

Recent Projects

Natural Gas and the Transformation of Energy Markets: China in a Global Context
Investigators: Peter Sheehan, Enjiang Cheng, Fanghong Sun, Steven Parker, Alison Welsh, Bruce Mountain
Funded by: Australia China Natural Gas Technology Partnership Fund (ACNGTPF)
Funding 2016-2107: $110,000
Description: As China and other countries seek to reduce the role of coal and oil in energy use, the interplay between renewables and natural gas over the period to 2030 will be important in shaping outcomes in many countries, not least China. The overall goal of this project is to provide an improved knowledge base, to the ACNGTPF funders and to related parties in China and in Australia, on these key global factors influencing China’s structural adjustment process and on the progress being made in China.

Reports:
Sheehan, P., Cheng, E. and Sun, F. 2016, Natural Gas and the Transformation of Energy Markets: China in a Global Context, Scoping Report to ACNGTPF, VISES, Victoria University, Melbourne.
Sheehan, P., Sun, F., Parker, S., Mountain, B. and Cheng, E. 2017, The Transformation of Energy Markets: China in a Global Context, final report to ACNGTPF, VISES, Victoria University, Melbourne, May, 55 pp.
 

Mapping and Understanding Bushfire and Natural Hazard Vulnerability and Risk at the Institutional Scale
Investigators: Roger Jones, Bruce Rasmussen, John Symons, Celeste Young, and Peter Sheehan
Funded by: Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC
Funding 2014-2017: $420,000
Description: The project objective is to develop a framework for understanding the ownership of risks from bushfires and natural hazards at the institutional level. It will look at institutions involved in natural disasters, such as local, state and federal government, and the community and private sector, and assess how their specific values and rules interact with the broader values affected by natural disasters.

Reports and papers:
Young, C. and Jones, R. 2017, Mapping and Understanding Bushfire and Natural Hazard Vulnerability and Risks at the Institutional Scale Project: Final Report, Report to Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC, VISES, Victoria University, February, 36 pp.
Young, C. and Jones, R. 2017, Risk Ownership Summary: Key Research Findings, Report to Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC, VISES, Victoria University, February, 33 pp.
Young, C., Jones, R., Kumnick, M., Christopher, G. and Casey, N. 2016, Risk Ownership Framework for Emergency Management Policy and Practice, Report to Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC, VISES, Victoria University, July, 84 pp.
Symons, J. Jones, R.N. Milne, R. and MacLeod, A. 2015, Economic Geography of Bushfire and Flood Vulnerability in Victoria at the Statistical Local Area Scale, Report to Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC, VISES, Victoria University, July, 77 pp.
Young, C., Jones, R. and Symons, J. 2016, Mapping and Understanding Bushfire and Natural Hazard Vulnerability and Risks at the Institutional Scale, Annual Project Report 2015–2016 to Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC, VISES, Victoria University, June, 18 pp. (PDF 1.8 MB)
Young, C., Symons, J. and Jones, R. 2016, Institutional Maps of Risk Ownership for Strategic Decision Making, Report to Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC, VISES, Victoria University, June, 46 pp. (PDF 1.3 MB)
Young, C., Symons, J. and Jones, R. 2016, Understanding Values at Risk And Risk Ownership: Workshop Synthesis Report, Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC, VISES, Victoria University, June, 115 pp. (PDF 5 MB)
Young, C., Jones, R. and Symons, J. 2015, Mapping and Understanding our Values at Risk and Risk Ownership: Workshop Context Paper, VISES Climate Change Working Paper No. 28, VISES, Melbourne, 33 pp.
Jones, R., Young, C. and Symons, J. 2015, Mapping Values at Risk from Natural Hazards at Geographic and Institutional Scales: Framework Development, VISES Climate Change Working Paper No. 27, VISES, Melbourne, 37 pp.
Young, C.K. and Jones, R.N. 2015, Mapping and Understanding Bushfire and Natural Hazard Vulnerability and Risks at the Institutional Scale: Annual Report 2014, January, 9 pp.
Young, C.K., Symons, J. and Jones, R.N. 2015, Whose Risk is it Anyway? Desktop Review of Institutional Ownership of Risk Associated with Natural Hazards and Disasters, Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC, Canberra, 52 pp.
Young, C. 2014, The Problem Solution Framework: Process Guidance for Adaptation Practitioners, VISES Climate Change Working Paper No. 19, VISES, Melbourne, 64 pp.
Young, C. and Jones, R. 2014, ‘Annual Report 2014: Mapping and Understanding Bushfire and Natural Hazard Vulnerability and Risks at the Institutional Scale’, BNHCRC Project B2, VISES, Victoria University, Melbourne.
 

Implications for Australia of China’s Demand for LNG
Investigators: Peter Sheehan, Fang Hong Sun, Steven Parker, and Alison Welsh, with assistance from Enjiang Cheng.
Funded by: Australia China Natural Gas Technology Partnership Fund (ACNGTP)
Funding 2014: $60,000
Description: The overall goal of this project is to provide an improved knowledge base, to the ACNGTP and to related parties in China and in Australia, on the key global factors influencing China’s structural adjustment process and on the progress being made in China in addressing these challenges. The project documents and analyses the ongoing dynamics of the global competition between natural gas and renewables as the share of coal and oil declines, and project potential future outcomes of that competition. The study also documents and analyses the progressive transformation of China’s energy structure, with particular reference to the role of gas and renewables, in this context.
 

Assessing the Economic Value of Green Infrastructure
Investigators: Roger Jones, Celeste Young and John Symons
Funded by: City of Melbourne
Partners: Banyule City Council, Moonee Valley City Council, Kingston City Council, and Department of Environment, Land, Water, and Planning
Funding 2014-2015: $200,000
Description: This is a collaborative project between the City of Banyule Council, the City of Kingston Council and Moonee Valley City Council, led by the City of Melbourne. It is funded by the Victorian Adaptation and Sustainability Partnership (VASP), an established partnership between the Victorian Government and Victoria's 79 local councils. It develops an economic framework for green infrastructure to help local government value the benefits of green infrastructure (GI), especially for adapting to climate change. The framework will enable local council asset managers and officers to address the multiple benefits of GI projects. It does this by building guidance for developing business cases
and asset management into existing decision-making processes for developing GI.

Reports:
VISES 2015, Green Infrastructure Economic Framework, Victoria University, Melbourne. (PDF 3.9 MB)
VISES 2015, Green Infrastructure Economic Framework Summary Report, Victoria University, Melbourne. (PDF 2 MB)
Bowen, K.J. and Parry, M. 2015, The Evidence Base for Linkages Between Green Infrastructure, Public Health and Economic Benefit, paper prepared for the project Assessing the Economic Value of Green Infrastructure. (PDF 670 KB)
Bowen, K.J. and Parry, M. 2015, Green Infrastructure and its Tri-benefits: Health, Environment and Economic, City of Melbourne. (PDF 1.7 MB)
Jones, R.N., Symons, J. and Young, C.K. 2015, Assessing the Economic Value of Green Infrastructure: Green Paper, Climate Change Working Paper No. 24, VISES, Victoria University, Melbourne. (PDF 1.1 MB)
Symons, J., Jones, R.N., Young, C.K. and Rasmussen, B. 2015, Assessing the Economic Value of Green Infrastructure: Literature Review, Climate Change Working Paper No 23, VISES, Victoria University, Melbourne. (PDF 1.6 MB)
Young, C.K, Symons, J. and Jones, R.N. 2015, Investing in Growth: Understanding the Value of Green Infrastructure Workshop Report, Climate Change Working Paper No. 22, VISES, Victoria University, Melbourne. (PDF 920 KB MB)
Young, C.K, Jones, R.N. and Symons, J. 2014, Investing in Growth: Understanding the Value of Green Infrastructure, Workshop Context Paper, Climate Change Working Paper No. 21, VISES, Victoria University, Melbourne. (PDF 920 KB)
 

Integrated Water Cycle Management at Brooklyn Industrial Estate for the Living Brooklyn Project
Investigators: Roger Jones (VISES) and Daniel Ooi (VU)
Funded by: City of Brimbank (Office of Living Victoria Fund)
Funding 2014-2015: $50,000
Description: To explore the role of water in the Brooklyn Industrial Precinct by understanding its role in influencing risks and potential solutions to those risks.

Report:
Jones, R.N. and Ooi, D. 2014, Living Brooklyn: Baseline Report on the Economics of the Urban Water Cycle in the Brooklyn Industrial Precinct, August, 42 pp.
 

Making our Cities Liveable: Economic Evaluation and Policy Analysis for Green Infrastructure
Investigator: Gayathri Mekala
Funded by: DFAT, Australia-India Council
Funding 2014: $18,975
Description: The principle aim of the project was to showcase the knowledge and expertise of the Australian team and build a new collaborative partnership with Indian research and government institutions, in the field of institutional economics, intergovernmental financing of projects, valuation of green infrastructure, and integrated urban water management in the context of a changing climate.
 

Exploring Science–Policy Links for the New Generation of Climate Change Scenarios
Investigator: Roger Bodman
Funded by a 2013 Victoria University Research Development Grant

Workshop report:
Bodman, R.W., Young, C. and Jones, R.N. 2014, Workshop Report – The Science Policy Nexus: Assessing Climate Policy in an Imperfect World, VISES, January, 41 pp.
 

Valuing Adaptation Under Rapid Change: Anticipatory Adjustments, Maladaptation and Transformation
Investigators: Roger Jones, Peter Sheehan, Brantley Liddle and Gayathri Mekala (CSES); and John Handmer (RMIT University), Rod Marsh (Net Balance Foundation) and Celeste Young (VCCCAR)
Funded by: National Climate Change Adaptation Research Facility (NCCARF)
Funding 2011-2012: $350,000
Description: Examined a number of key aspects of the how the climate changes and explored the challenges and opportunities that this poses when valuing adaptation to climate change.

Reports:
Jones, R., Young, C., Handmer, J., Keating, A., Mekala, G. and Sheehan, P. 2013, Valuing Adaptation Under Rapid Change: Final Report, NCCARF, RMIT University and Victoria University, August, 192 pp.
Other outputs:
Jones, R. N., Young, C. K., Handmer, J., Keating, A., Mekala, G. D., Sheehan, P. 2013, Valuing Adaptation Under Rapid Change: Research Summary for Policy Makers, CSES, August, 21 pp.
Young, C. and Jones, R. 2013, Beyond the Mean Workshop: Final Report, May, 55 pp.
Project poster: The scientific origins of the gradualist adaptation narrative and how to move beyond it (August 2013)
Project poster: Adaptation and innovation: reframing adaptation implementation (August 2013)
Project poster handout: Adaptation and innovation: reframing adaptation implementation (2013)
Guidance notes for reading the IPCC summary for policymakers (October 2013)
 

Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 5th Assessment Report Coordinating Lead Author
Investigator: Roger Jones
Funded by: Department of Climate Change and Energy Efficiency
Funding 2012: $37,500
Description: Appointedment of Co-ordinating Lead Author of chapter ‘Foundations of Decision-making’ for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Working Group II Fifth Assessment Report due in 2014.

Output:
Chapter 2 Foundations for Decision-making
 

CRN Project: Water Management - Economics Externality Costing
Investigators: Roger Jones in collaboration with Darla Hatton-McDonald and David Marlow of CSIRO
Funding 2013-2015 by CSIRO and CRN: For Postdoctoral Researcher Gayathri Mekala and Collaborative Researcher Celeste Young

Ouputs:
Mekala, G.D. 2014, Rehabilitation of Stony Creek: Valuation of the Benefits of Rehabilitation,  Report submitted to City West Water, 37 pp.
 

A Regional Study of Increased Gas Use in Beijing and Guangdong, China
Investigators: Peter Sheehan and Alex English (CSES), Jiang Kejun and Yang Yufeng (Energy Research Institute); Bruce Mountain (Carbon Markets Economics); John Phillimore (Curtin Business School);
Funded by: Australia China Natural Gas Technology Partnership Fund (ACNGTP) and Department of Resources, Energy and Tourism (DRET), Canberra
Funding total 2011-2012: $120,000
Description: Examined the major opportunities and constraints for rapidly increasing natural gas use through a comparative study in two economically significant regions: Beijing and the southern province of Guangdong.

Report:
Sheehan, P., English, A., Sun, F. and Cheng, E. 2014, The National and Regional Development of China’s Gas Market: Beyond Evolutionary Change?, 72 pp.
 

Developing a Low Carbon Blueprint for China’s Cities
Investigators: Alex English and Peter Sheehan (CSES); Dr Jiang Kejun, Energy Research Institute (ERI) and Dr Xu He, Nankai University
Funded by: Department of Climate Change and Energy Efficiency (DCCEE), Canberra
Funding 2012: $242,821
Description: Analytical research on and the development of a policy roadmap for, the transition to low carbon urban development by 2030; and the development of a low carbon index system for both Beijing and Tianjin, China.
 

Contacts:

Peter Sheehan, Research Director VISES, Peter.Sheehan@vu.edu.au

Roger Jones, Professorial Fellow, VISES, Roger.Jones@vu.edu.au

 

Investigators