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Truly sustainable management and use of Australia’s unique ecosystems requires:

  • a comprehensive understanding of ecosystem composition and function, and how these are changing over time (eg in response to altered fire regimes, climate variability, species extinctions or invasions);
  • appropriately resourced long-term monitoring programs that report on meaningful indicators at relevant temporal and spatial scales to build a better national picture of our major ecosystems;
  • adaptive management processes that can evaluate and respond to changes reported by the monitoring programs; and
  • world leading predictive modelling capability that can integrate data from a range of disciplines and scales to evaluate management options and their impacts.

While these goals may have been occasionally achieved in the past at local and regional scales or for particular ecosystem types or landuses, TERN enables Australia to progress towards sustainability on a continental scale. Our nationally networked infrastructure and multidisciplinary approach is already enabling pastoralists, government agencies and the ecosystem science community to work across administrative boundaries and increase understanding, measure and monitor change, and more sustainably manage our ecosystem assets.

On this page you will find regularly updated links describing some of the ways in which TERN and its many partners are working to help improve the sustainability of management and use of Australia’s terrestrial ecosystems.

Land Sub-Themes:

Taking TERN soil tools to near neighbours and beyond

April 2017

TERN’s Soil and Landscape Grid of Australia continues to be used as regional role model and template in international cooperative soil information management. The Grid has recently been on show at the FAO in Rome and used in a suite of skill development and training projects with our near neighbours and beyond including Indonesia, Taiwan and Russia.


Making farms “more profitable in every sense”

April 2017

20 years of biodiversity and farm health research at TERN monitoring sites will help ANU researchers and farmers better integrate the environment and farming to deliver increased productivity, improved conservation outcomes and more resilient farming communities.


Taking the pulse of Australia’s environment

March 2017

Researchers have taken advantage of TERN’s trusted national and long-term data to develop the recently released ‘Australia’s Environment in 2016’. The report, and its accompanying interactive website, provide an annual summary of 13 key environmental indicators and how they have changed over time.


TERN teams up with Google to deliver Australian science to millions worldwide

February 2017

TERN has again teamed up with Google, this time to make detailed information on Australia’s soil and landscapes available through the Google Earth Engine. As a result researchers can benefit from Google’s cloud computing power, cutting their data processing and analysis times from hours to seconds.


People using TERN: Andrew Edwards

February 2017

A research fellow from the Darwin Centre for Bushfire Research is using TERN delivered data to map fire severity across the Top End for more informed regional fire management and more accurate national carbon accounting.


New tools to improve state fire mapping

January 2017

The South Australian Government have partnered with TERN to develop new techniques that improve state fire mapping, and understanding of fire location, extent and timing. The new methods use TERN’s satellite data products, and align with those of neighbouring states, in a significant step towards nationally consistent fire mapping.


Online data and tools transforming farm planning and monitoring

October 2016

A natural resource management, research and industry consortium have used TERN infrastructure to deliver an innovative service that equips landholders to make better decisions for improved productivity and sustainability.


Detecting landscape change with drones

October 2016

TERN has provided the research infrastructure and collaborative networks to support a landmark project that demonstrates the game changing role drones can play in characterising, mapping and monitoring changes in our natural and managed landscapes,  including mapping vegetation and landforms, tracking stock movements, and counting animals such as kangaroos.


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