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Department of Environment and Science

Queensland Government

Science portfolio of the Department of Environment and Science

Department of Environment and Science


Queensland's population is estimated to reach 8.6 million by 2044. Queensland's widely dispersed population results in public transport challenges with a very high length of road per capita, higher transport costs and demand for improved road safety. While the state’s population is aging, younger people are trending away from high rates of car use with an increased use of public transport.

Queensland's freight traffic is expected to double over the next 20 years, driven by population growth and economic activity. Enhancing freight movement is critical to Queensland’s global competitiveness and economic performance.

Technology will have a profound impact on the state’s ability to manage transport demand: from easing congestion through advanced traffic control systems to autonomous vehicles that carry freight along specifically allocated corridors within urban hubs of the future.

The Department of Transport and Main Roads is the lead agency for transport in the state. The Department commissions research from a number of Queensland research centres. The Queensland Government is working with research centres and energy providers to understand the implication of and to facilitate and respond to the increasing use of electric vehicles.

In addressing these challenges, Queensland is working to make transport smarter. The advances in sensors, micro motors and data communications provide exciting opportunities to track, coordinate and control the transport system, and create significant productivity gains that could be emulated around the world.

The state has a regulatory environment that supports the use and development of renewable transport fuels. Queensland is ideally placed to be a world leader in the development of renewable energy sources. The Queensland Government’s Department of State Development is leading Australia’s bio-economic revolution through the Biofutures 10-Year Roadmap and Action Plan (PDF). Biofutures refers to the industrial biotechnology and bioproducts sector including biofuels.

Queensland has nine universities including three of Australia’s largest. Details of 200 plus research centres in Queensland are available by searching the Queensland science capability directory.

Transport research centres

Over 50 Queensland institutes, centres and other research organisations are involved in the transport sector including:

Last updated
1 July 2017