Fi­nal re­search chap­ter

The Weekly Advertiser Horsham - - AgLife -

Re­searchers from across Aus­tralia gath­ered at Hor­sham Golf Club to dis­cuss the find­ings from the Aus­tralian Grains Free Air CO2 En­rich­ment, AGFACE, project and to cel­e­brate its con­clu­sion af­ter 12 years.

The AGFACE project was an in­ves­ti­ga­tion into how plants will re­spond to higher car­bon diox­ide lev­els, and a chang­ing cli­mate, pre­dicted in the fu­ture.

Guests at Thursday’s fo­rum in­cluded Pro­fes­sor Tim Reeves and Pro­fes­sor Snow Barlow from the Uni­ver­sity of Mel­bourne and Stephen Loss and Craig Ruchs from the Grains Re­search and De­vel­op­ment Cor­po­ra­tion.

AGFACE re­search in Hor­sham was a joint col­lab­o­ra­tion be­tween Agri­cul­ture Vic­to­ria Re­search and The Uni­ver­sity of Mel­bourne.

The project pro­duced al­most 100 peer-re­viewed pa­pers and book chap­ters, 15 Masters and PHD the­ses, 120 con­fer­ence pre­sen­ta­tions and dozens of me­dia re­leases, field days and in­dus­try pub­li­ca­tions.

Col­lab­o­ra­tions in­cluded: Har­vard Uni­ver­sity, US; NASA/USDA-ARS; Rotham­sted Re­seach, Eng­land; Uni­ver­sity of Illi­nois, US; Uni­ver­sity of Freiburg, Ger­many; Uni­ver­sity of Birm­ing­ham, Eng­land; Other FACE pro­grams in Ja­pan, China, New Zealand, the US, and Ger­many; Span­ish Na­tional Re­search Coun­cil, Uni­ver­sity of Idaho; Univer­si­dad Politéc­nica de Madrid; CSIRO, Monash Uni­ver­sity, La Trobe Uni­ver­sity and Uni­ver­sity of South­ern Queens­land.

One of the project’s peer-re­viewed pa­pers ap­peared in Na­ture, one of the high­est-ranked sci­en­tific jour­nals in the world.

AGFACE at Hor­sham was the only FACE fa­cil­ity in a semi-arid zone, al­low­ing re­searchers to test the ef­fect of el­e­vated CO2 on crops in drought con­di­tions.

The main ques­tion the project sought to an­swer was: How can Aus­tralian agri­cul­ture max­imise the pos­i­tives and re­duce the neg­a­tives of el­e­vated car­bon diox­ide on crop pro­duc­tion in a chang­ing cli­mate?

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