The Australian Gold Rush of the 19th and early 20th century caused the release of toxic heavy metals into the Australian landscape. The current concentration and distribution of these metals in the Tambaroora and Turon River areas of Wiradjuri Country, NSW, is unknown. Additionally, the unique impacts that these metals may have on Wiradjuri people, culture, and Country are also unknown. This project will utilise a Two-Way research approach that combines environmental chemistry, Wiradjuri Ways-of-Knowing, yarning, and creative ethnography to create and communicate a holistic understanding of the extent and potential impacts of these metals on Wiradjuri Country, especially as climate change, rising temperatures, and increasingly frequent natural disasters threaten to exacerbate the situation for the worse.
About the Speaker
Brianna is a woman of Wiradjuri, Australian settler, and Scottish heritage, and is currently studying for her PhD. Brianna has a background in medicinal chemistry and pharmacology but made the switch to environmental chemistry when she began working for the Australian Department of Climate Change, Energy, the Environment, and Water. As an Indigenous scientist, she trys to champion Traditional Knowledge and Indigenous-Ways-of-Knowing in her research, and in the scientific spaces she works in. She is also the co-convenor of the Fenner Circle, an Indigenous, student-led yarning circle hosted through the Fenner School.
Brianna was the 2023 Recipient of the Game Change Scholarship.