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19 July 2021 | dataset

Coupled climate and sea-level changes deduced from Huon Peninsula coral terraces of the last ice age

Department of Environment and Conservation

The Department of Environment and Conservation (DEC) was established in 1985. Its mission (approved by the National Executive Council on 22 August 1989) is to ensure natural and physical resources are managed to sustain environmental quality and human well-being.

The key legislations administered by the Department are:

Environmental Planning Act 1978

Environmental Contaminants Act 1978

Conservation Areas Act 1978

National Parks Act 1982

International Trade (Fauna & Flora) Act 1979

Fauna (Protection and Control) Act 1966

Crocodile Trade (Protection) Act 1974

Water Resources Act 1982

It also has an important role under the Forests Act 1992.


Climate Change and Development Authority (CCDA) is a new government entity that is now undergoing transition from the former Office of Climate Change and Development (OCCD). CCDA coordinates the Climate Change efforts of the Government of Papua New Guinea, a continuation of basically where the former OCCD left off. It is the coordinating entity for all climate change related policies and actions in the country. Additionally, it is the designated National Authority under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). The office is currently undergoing a transitional phase which requires a major re-structure, in a coordinated and structured manner,complying with its own Climate Change Management Act (CCMA) 2015. The CCMA 2015 clearly defines this in Sections 8-11 of the Act on the organisation’s establishment, purpose, functions and powers.

CCDA is basically tasked with ensuring that Papua New Guinea follows a path of climate-compatible growth; that the country’s economy develops while simultaneously mitigating greenhouse gas emissions and reducing vulnerability to climate change related risks.


Huon Peninsula, Papua New Guinea, is a tectonically unstable, uplifting shoreline ringed by emergent coral terraces. The terraces were formed during episodes of rapid sea-level rise when corals constructed large, discrete coral platforms that were subsequently uplifted. Uranium series ages of four prominent Huon Peninsula last glacial (OIS 3) coral terraces coincide with the timing of major North Atlantic climate reversals at intervals of 6000^7000 yr between 30 000 yr and 60 000 yr ago. Terrace elevations, when combined with uplift, indicate 10^15-m high sea-level excursions at these times. We attribute the growth of the terraces directly to sea-level rises arising from ice-calving episodes from major North Atlantic ice-sheets and the Antarctic ice-sheet that precipitated extremes of cold climate called Heinrich events. These periods are associated with major discharges of land-based ice and enhanced concentrations of ice-rafted debris in deep-sea cores. Sea-levels at this time were 60^90 m lower than present.

Field Value Value
Publisher PNG Conservation and Environment Protection Authority, Climate Change and Development Authority in PNG PNG Conservation and Environment Protection Authority, Climate Change and Development Authority in PNG
Modified 19 July 2021 19 July 2021
Release Date 19 July 2021 19 July 2021
Identifier 2d461b28-0edc-468c-995c-29555e4ad13e 2d461b28-0edc-468c-995c-29555e4ad13e
License Public
[Open Data]
[Open Data]