Collaborative Science and Coastal Adaptation

In July an important paper of international relevance was published in Frontiers and Marine Science titled “Collaborative science to enhance coastal resilience and adaptation”. The lead authors were C. Reid Nichols and Don Wright along with 11 others including Scott Bainbridge from AIMS in Townsville. Read More


Science can be incomprehensible to many, yet it requires others to help communicate and apply great works such as those of Albert Einstein. Climate change science is also quite complex and those in this field are facing similar difficulties to those who sought to explain relativity to the broader public. It is irresponsible of decision-makers to not trust the science and ignore its implications in today’s uncertain world. Read More

The Sandiford Line

Meanderings around the Australian coast excite one’s interests in so many weird and wonderful ways. Long ago I was fascinated by the writings of Reg Sprigg on the elevated palaeo-shorelines of South Australia. They stood in strong contrast to anything I had observed in NSW and southern Queensland. Read More

A Curiosity of Cusps

It is often said that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. For me a trip to the beach is enhanced when I see cusps. These delightful, rhythmic features are often so captivating in their geometric Read More

Federal Election 2019 and Coasts

I am not sure how many Australians appreciated promises made about coastal issues during the recent federal election. Perhaps very few. This despite the fact that so much of our national well-being and livelihoods are dependent on healthy coasts and waterways. Yet it is interesting to look at promises made by the two major parties and think about what our federal system has to offer over the next 3 years (and beyond!). Read More

Mangrove Generations

It was a thrill last week to attend a meeting of four generations of folk interested in mangrove science. The gathering took place at University of Wollongong and involved my former PhD student, Professor Neil Saintilan, his former PhD student Kerrylee Rogers now Associate Professor, and her postgraduate students, Kirtie Lal and Kristian Kumbier. Colin Woodroffe was also present highlighting the breadth of interest and range of work undertaken over the past 50 plus years by this group in mangrove ecology and links to geomorphology. Read More

The Mighty Ord

When I left the Coastal Studies Institute (CSI) at Louisiana State University in 1967, I never thought I would work on another project with that group. It was a pleasant surprise to receive an invite in early 1971 to join Don Wright in a study of the Ord River estuary. Read More

The right to bath on the beach

Australian’s today believe they have a public right to access and use the beach. That includes the right to swim and surf. It has not always been so. Doug Booth, the historian, has written a wonderful account of steps taken to enjoy the ocean waters (Australian Beach Cultures: the History of Sun, Sand and Surf, 2001). More recently, Caroline Ford in her book, Sydney Beaches, A History (2014, Chapters 1 and 2), has further explored the story of how Sydney residents and councils managed to change the rules around bathing in the sea. Read More