Track Koalas From Space

Jul 28, 2004
koala

Satellite technology will be used to track koalas as part of a ground-breaking new research program between The University of Queensland and major mining company Rio Tinto Coal Australia (RTCA). Koalas at the Blair Athol mine site near Clermont will be fitted with special satellite tracking collars in the latest stage of a long-term partnership between the two organisations, launched by Environment Minister John Mickel this morning (July 29, 2004).

The partnership, known as Koala Venture, has delivered vital knowledge of koala habitat and diet which is then incorporated into the mine’s operations and rehabilitation programs.

“Koala Venture has been the longest running koala study in Australia and has delivered research findings promoting a broader understanding of koala ecology valuable to the conservation of this national icon,” University of Queensland Vice Chancellor Professor John Hay AC said.

“In the next phase of our partnership we will employ this new technology and extend the horizons in which we are operating to provide data on the animals twenty-four hours a day.

“In that way, we aim to not only gain more information on the population under investigation, but also provide a methodology which could be employed across the country.”

The new partnership takes Rio Tinto Coal Australia’s commitment to protecting the koala to almost $1.5 million.

“We have a commitment to sustainable land use which sits at the forefront of our business,” RTCA Managing Director Dr Grant Thorne said.

“Through Koala Venture, RTCA not only protects the Clermont population, but demonstrates the value we place on environmental performance for all of our mining operations.”

Blair Athol Mine General Manager Hennie Du Plooy said the acquisition of such data was critical to improved environmental outcomes for the mine’s operation, both now and into the future.

“As well as being Australia’s largest export coal mine, we are proud to be raising the bar on managing mine-site fauna with this partnership,” Mr Du Plooy said.

In launching the partnership Environment Minister, John Mickel, congratulated Rio Tinto and the University of Queensland on their ongoing commitment to koala conservation.

“This partnership complements the work the Environmental Protection Agency is undertaking to protect and conserve koala colonies across Queensland,” Mr Mickel said.

“It shows that good environmental management is underpinned by science. It is not about creating public relations opportunities.

“Rio Tinto and the University of Queensland are also showing what can be achieved when the green dollar is invested wisely. I wish the venture continued success.”

Source: www.uq.edu.au/news/

Explore further: NASA's reliance on outsourcing launches causes a dilemma for the space agency

Related Stories

Light echo helps researchers map out parts of galaxy

1 hour ago

Thousands of years before humans invented agriculture, a bright burst of X-rays left the dense neutron star Circinus X-1, located in the faint Southern constellation Circinus. A year and a half ago, those ...

Cuban, US scientists bond over big sharks

2 hours ago

Somewhere in the North Atlantic right now, a longfin mako shark—a cousin of the storied great white—is cruising around, oblivious to the yellow satellite tag on its dorsal fin.

Gimmicks and technology: California learns to save water

2 hours ago

Billboards and TV commercials, living room visits, guess-your-water-use booths, and awards for water stinginess—a wealthy swath of Orange County that once had one of the worst records for water conservation ...

Recommended for you

Hubble view: Wolf-Rayet stars, intense and short-lived

Jul 03, 2015

This NASA/European Space Agency (ESA) Hubble Space Telescope picture shows a galaxy named SBS 1415+437 (also called SDSS CGB 12067.1), located about 45 million light-years from Earth. SBS 1415+437 is a Wolf-Rayet ...

Crash test assesses plane emergency locator transmitters

Jul 03, 2015

The Cessna 172 airplane dangled 82 feet in the air – looking almost like it was coming in for a landing, except for the cables attaching it to a huge gantry at NASA's Langley Research Center in Hampton, ...

NASA image: Curiosity's stars and stripes

Jul 03, 2015

This view of the American flag medallion on NASA's Mars rover Curiosity was taken by the rover's Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) during the 44th Martian day, or sol, of Curiosity's work on Mars (Sept. 19, 2012). ...

NASA image: Stellar sparklers that last

Jul 03, 2015

While fireworks only last a short time here on Earth, a bundle of cosmic sparklers in a nearby cluster of stars will be going off for a very long time. NGC 1333 is a star cluster populated with many young ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.