VCCCAR chair appointed

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Leading meteorologist to head VCCCAR Advisory Board.

One of Australia's leading climate scientists has been appointed as the inaugural chairperson of the Victorian Centre for Climate Change Adaptation Research (VCCCAR) Advisory Board. Professor John Zillman chaired his first board meeting on 9 March.

VCCCAR was established in 2009 as a consortium of Melbourne, Monash, La Trobe and RMIT universities to undertake research into climate change adaptation issues and to help government departments and Victorian communities prepare for the impact of climate change. VCCCAR is funded by the Department of Sustainability and Environment under a five year, $5 million dollar agreement. The University of Melbourne administers the Centre on behalf of the consortium.
Professor Zillman brings to the Board has an outstanding record of achievement and leadership in climate science at both national and international levels and has been actively engaged in international scientific analysis and advice on climate change since the formation of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) over 20 years ago.
A Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science (AAS) and the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering (ATSE), he served as President of ATSE from 2003 to 2006 and of the National Academies Forum (NAF) from 2005 to 2006. He also served as President of the International Council of Academies of Engineering and Technological Sciences (CAETS) in 2006.
As Commonwealth Director of Meteorology (1978-2003) he spent several decades serving on the Standing Committees of various Commonwealth-State Ministerial Councils dealing with water resources, agriculture and environment. He has chaired or served on a wide range of national committees and advisory bodies including the Prime Minister's Science, Engineering and Innovation Council(PMSEIC) and the National Commission for UNESCO.
Professor Zillman served on the Executive Council of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) from 1979 to 2004, including 8 years (1987-1995) as First Vice-President and 8 years (1995-2003) as President of WMO. He led Australian Delegations to the 1993 Intergovernmental Meeting on the World Climate Programme, the 1999 World Conference on Science and the 2003, 2004 and 2005 Ministerial Earth Observation Summits. He was Australia's Principal Delegate to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) from 1994 to 2004, served as a member of the IPCC Bureau and was a Vice Chair for both Working Group I (Physical Science) and Working Group II (Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability). He chaired the Steering Committee for the Global Climate Observing System (GCOS) from 2006 to 2009 and the International Organizing Committee for the 2009 Third World Climate Conference.
Professor Zillman holds a Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Physics and a Bachelor of Arts (Political Science and Public Administration) from the University of Queensland; a Master of Science (Meteorology) from the University of Melbourne; and a Doctorate of Philosophy (Meteorology and Oceanography) from the University of Wisconsin (US). He was awarded an Honorary DSc from Monash University in 1997.
"I am pleased to help develop a collaborative venture between Victorian universities in such a key field as climate change adaptation", said Professor Zillman. "There is a critical need for research and analysis to help governments develop and implement informed policies in response to climate change and I look forward to helping this Centre achieve these goals."