Department of Environmental Sciences

Department of Environmental Sciences

Eddy Covariance tower will measure greenhouse gas over the Tomago wetlands - By Neil Saintilan

The Department of Environmental Sciences is a dynamic and dedicated group of academics and research students who study and teach the interactions that occur between the physical, biological and human environments. We study how the environment works across space and how these dynamics have changed over time. We are heavily focused on how humans have altered environments and how environments can be better managed in future.

The Department is committed to excellence in research, quality teaching, and efficacious professional and community engagement.  Environmental Sciences was awarded the maximum rating (5 out of 5 ‘well above world standard’) in the 2015 Excellence in Research for Australia (ERA) analysis. Our research strengths in Environmental Science and Management, Physical Geography and Geosciences, and Atmospheric Sciences all received the maximum rating of 5.

Our world-class research explores:

  • Environmental science and management
  • Physical geography and geosciences
  • Atmospheric science
  • Climate science
  • Coastal and marine science
  • Contaminant geochemistry
  • Climate and energy science
  • Environmental earth science and
  • Geomorphology.

We use this research proficiency in environmental management applications with internationally-recognised expertise in rivers, wetlands, coasts, marine, deserts and atmospheric environments.

To support this research in both the field and the laboratory, the Department has cutting-edge analytical equipment and facilities, external funding to support environmental research, and partnerships with government and non-government organisations for applied environmental research.

The Department hosts a number of research centres and is the home of the River Styles® framework – used in river management practice and professional training, and VegeSafe - a community science participation program to inform the community about metal and metalloid contaminants in their garden soil.

A canopy crane in the North Queensland Daintree Rainforest, Djelk Rangers, Justin Redford and Zelanda Watson from Nangak Country and Bapeng Cave

Photography by: Neil Saintilan, Peter Nelson, Emilie Ens and Kira Westaway.

2015 Annual Report

As an environmentally focused department, we’ve decided to take a different approach to our first ever annual report, keeping the bulk of it in digital form accessible here via pdf download.

To celebrate our first year we’ve also published a special highlights book, with an overview of who we are and what we’ve achieved over the past year. To request a copy please email


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