SCU Lismore

LOREX: Southern Cross University at Lismore

LocationLismore, New South Wales, Australia
Associated UniversitySouthern Cross University
Program Datesmid June 2019 and January 2020

The Marine Ecology Research Centre (MERC) and Centre for Coastal Biogeochemistry (CCBR) are located at the Lismore campus of Southern Cross University.

Marine Ecology Research Centre

There are 10 resident scientists at MERC who will be available to collaborate with students covering areas of marine biology, chemistry, climate change, geology, natural products, management, ecosystem services, and restoration:

  • Professor Peter Harrison, Centre Director, works on corals and coral reef ecosystems, whales and dolphins, and pollution impacts on tropical and polar marine organisms.
  • Associate Professor Kirsten Benkendorff, Deputy Director, is a natural products chemist. She works on medicinal properties and functional food potential of mollusks, and bioindicators for environmental health and ocean climate change.
  • Professor Caroline Sullivan works in water resources management, poverty alleviation, and sustainable development.
  • Amanda Reichelt-Brushett works on human impacts on the environment, specifically, sources, fate, and consequences of contaminants in our environment.
  • Danny Bucher is a marine ecologist and fisheries biologist working on subtropical marine biodiversity and determining the ages of various animals.
  • Lachlan Yee works on polymer (plastics) in both marine and soil environments. His applications include antimicrobial polymers.
  • Sander Scheffers focuses on long-term geochemical records from fossil and modern coral cores to distinguish long-term natural variability from more recent anthropogenic impacts.
  • Debra Stokes works on coastal ecology, estuarine and marine ecology, and the influence of sedimentation on the abundance and diversity of estuarine plant and animal species.
  • Nedeljka Rosic is a molecular biologist focusing on the discovery of novel medicinal bio-products, coral-algal symbiosis, biotic and abiotic stress factors, genetic bio-markers, and protein engineering.
  • Daniele Cagnazzi works on ecology and conservation of marine mammal populations with emphasis on conservation genetics, toxicology, and ecology.

To learn more, visit the host institute’s website:

Centre for Coastal Biogeochemistry

There are 12 resident scientists at the Center for Coastal Biogeochemistry who will be available to collaborate with students focusing on nutrient over-enrichment (Eutrophication), ocean acidification, climate change, greenhouse gases and hypoxia.

  • Professor Bradley Eyre, Centre Director, works on carbon and nitrogen cycling in coastal systems, coral reef biogeochemistry, carbonate sediment dissolution and greenhouse gas emissions from aquatic systems.
  • Professor Andrew Rose is an aquatic chemist who works on the biogeochemistry of iron and reactive oxygen species in marine and freshwater systems.
  • Kai Schulz is a biological oceanographer interested in climate change effects (ocean acidification, temperature and nutrient changes) on biogeochemical element cycling in planktonic ecosystems and changes to community composition.
  • Dirk Erler works on all aspects of nitrogen cycling processes in natural and engineered systems with particular emphasis on the use of stable isotopes to understand these processes.
  • Joanne Oakes, Deputy Director, is a stable isotope ecologist and biogeochemist. She uses stable isotope techniques, natural abundance and tracers, to investigate carbon and nitrogen cycling in coastal ecosystems and sediment microbial communities.
  • Naomi Wells is a biogeochemist who uses stable isotopes (δD, δ18O, δ15N, δ13C) to track the fate and transport of major nutrients between terrestrial, freshwater, and coastal environments.
  • Elisabeth Deschaseaux works on biogenic dimethylsulfide (DMS) emissions across various tropical marine systems: coral reefs, mangrove forests and seagrass beds.
  • Judith Rosentreter works on carbon cycling in coastal vegetated ecosystems, such as mangrove forests, with the main focus on CO2 and CH4 gas exchange between the water and atmosphere and lateral carbon exports to the ocean.
  • Matheus Carvalho works on aquatic photosynthesis, respiration, isotopic fractionation, and laboratory automation.
  • Rachel Murrayworks with N2O isotopes and isotopmers to elucidate the processes controlling N2O emissions in aquatic systems.
  • Hanieh Farid is a marine biologist interested in how micro/organisms bio-geochemically influence the environment to their advantage under the stress conditions.
  • Shane McIntosh is a biochemist working on capturing and recycling of energy and nutrients from industrial and agricultural waste.

To learn more, visit the host institute’s website:

This program is supported by NSF grant #1831075, 2019-2021.

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