Environmental issues

Pests and weeds

Weeds and climate change

Given the current threat posed by weeds to the environment, agriculture and human health there is significant interest in understanding the likely impact of climate change on weed abundance and distributions in Australia.

A recent report highlighted the likely effect of climate change on weeds, and minimising the impact of invasive organisms on biodiversity in future climates is a key objective of the National Biodiversity and Climate Change Action Plan.

To address this problem the Office of Environment and Heritage worked in collaboration with Macquarie University to model the distribution of significant weed species in NSW and to predict the effects of climate change on their potential distribution. Over 1600 plant species are known to be weeds in NSW so a select group of weeds of national and state importance were selected for modelling. The results of this study and its subsequent expansion can be found at Weed Futures, where the current and future weed threat of over 500 non-native species can be found. 

Page last updated: 16 February 2016