Tony Abbott $140M CSIRO Budget Cuts to Hamper Australian Research

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By Reissa Su | June 1, 2014 9:11 PM EST

Australia's Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation's (CSIRO) current and future research projects are at risk of being underfunded with the current Abbott government's budget cuts.

CSIRO CEO Dr. Megan Clark has announced that about 500 jobs will be lost as a result of funding reduction. The organization will also close eight research facilities in anticipation of the budget cut.

The country's premier science institution will lose a quarter of its researchers, scientists and staff after Abbott announced in late 2013 that the government will implement a public service jobs freeze. The blanket freeze will affect public service jobs, including the 1400 CSIRO workers. The impending freeze may affect some of the organization's priority research projects.

Abbott's declaration of a public service jobs freeze is effective immediately. According to reports, renewing or extending short-term contracts is no longer allowed under the new directive.

The CSIRO jobs freeze is part of the Abbott government's plan to sack 12,000 workers from public service. He also set to announce the immediate closure of various government commissions, national steering committees and expert panels in a wide range of sectors, including ethics, animal welfare and legal affairs.The Federal Cabinet has finalized the changes which would see a dozen government bodies axed or absorbed into existing government departments.

The scientific community in Australia has expressed its fears as the Abbott government's first annual budget will have more cuts for research in world-class facilities. The further slashing of funds may cost Australia its reputation for conducting cutting-edge scientific and medical researches.

The uncertainty over Australia's renewable energy target has led to a decline in investments within the renewable energy sector. Investors and economists are concerned about the future of renewable energy in Australia, especially now as the country stands to lose billions of dollars-worth of job opportunities.

CSIRO is responsible for many innovations in science and technology. Among them are Wi-Fi, eeroguard and the invention of plastic notes. The Twitter hashtag #thankscsiroforthat is a tribute to the hardworking male and female scientists at CSIRO.

Researchers and scientists in CSIRO work on biosecurity, climate adaptation, renewable energy, medical research, marine science, sustainable agriculture and preventive health measures among others.

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