ANU Vice Chancellor Brian Schmidt - We must keep learning and must keep doing

An image of the globe as seen from space, with orange indicating the areas of methane emissions.
23 January 2021

Speech to 2021 UN Climate Adaptation Summit

Friday 22 January 2021

It's a great honour to be asked to speak on behalf of the people of Australia and the global scientific community at this important summit.

As per our traditions here in Australia, I celebrate and pay my respects to the Ngunnawal and Ngambri people of the Canberra region whose cultures are among the oldest continuing cultures in human history - going back a mere 20000 years or so here.

I know that to many, the task we are discussing here today - heading off cataclysmic climate change - appears so huge and so difficult that it sometimes seems futile.

Such people say that our world is so vast and so timeless that any claim that we can influence it for good or ill, is conceited. An act of hubris.
It's this attitude we must combat.

Because by employing science, with the necessary scale, urgency and collaboration, we can and will succeed.

We need to keep learning and we need to keep doing.

Read the full speech transcript by ANU Vice Chancellor Prof Brian Schmidt on the ANU Newsroom website