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Top Ten Science Stories of 2017

Posted in Reflections On Science on December 12th, 2017.

Who would’ve thought freshwater would be a major election issue this year? Alongside the tragic deaths from synthetic drugs, freshwater, biosecurity, earthquakes and volcanoes have all made a show in the year’s top science stories. Some of last year’s stories have continued to draw headlines, including the Kaikōura earthquake, Havelock North campylobacter outbreak and Predator […]

Continue reading “Top Ten Science Stories of 2017

Why it’s so important to mark the anniversaries of earthquakes – Ursula Cochran

As the one year anniversary of the Kaikōura earthquake nears, GNS scientist Dr Ursula Cochran writes on The Spinoff why it’s important to mark the anniversaries of earthquakes, even ones that happened 300 years ago. An excerpt (read in full): Measuring how far we’ve come as a nation in living wisely with earthquakes is a […]

November 9th, 2017 Read full Story

Oz sizzles as climate action cools – Jim Salinger

2017 has been a sizzler for Australia, showing global warming is alive and well, but as Dr Jim Salinger writes in the NZ Herald, both Australian and New Zealand governments are failing on climate action. An excerpt (read in full): As Australia sizzles and the ice on our Southern Alps shrink what climate action is […]

September 26th, 2017 Read full Story

Farmers advocate takes wrong message from climate reports – Andy Reisinger

Deputy Director of the New Zealand Agricultural Greenhouse Gas Research Centre Dr Andy Reisinger offers a rebuttal in the NZ Herald to a column published on Tuesday. An excerpt (read in full): As a climate scientist, I strongly rebut Tuesday’s opinion piece by Robin Grieve who claimed he was relating facts from the Motu Research […]

August 24th, 2017 Read full Story

New Zealand doesn’t have a culture of youth drinking – Andy Towers

Massey University’s Dr Andy Towers is tired of hearing that New Zealand has a ‘youth drinking culture’, he writes in the Dominion Post. Drinking isn’t a ‘youth culture issue’, it’s a New Zealand culture issue. An excerpt (read in full): A potted history of New Zealand shows we’ve always had an alcohol problem. In colonial […]

July 4th, 2017 Read full Story

Water, water everywhere – Ian Fuller

Two environmental issues have dominated the news so far this election year, both focused on waterways, writes Massey University’s Associate Professor Ian Fuller in Hawkes Bay Today. An excerpt (read in full): Serious storms and flooding – and the resulting economic costs – have focused attention on the effects of climate change, while events like […]

June 8th, 2017 Read full Story

Vaccinations are part of a ‘bigger picture’ – Cathy Stephenson

The immense polarisation of opinions on immunisation has been highlighted through the response to Dr Lance O’Sullivan’s protest of an anti-vaccination documentary, GP Dr Cathy Stephenson writes on stuff.co.nz. An excerpt (read in full): There are people in both camps whose views won’t be shifted – that’s fine by me. We live in a world […]

June 1st, 2017 Read full Story

Scientific research the key to balancing productivity and environmental values — Tom Richardson

We can have a profitable agricultural sector and protect the environment, writes AgResearch chief executive Tom Richardson, we just need to use science.  An excerpt (read in full): As the head of a science organisation which is focused on solving that conundrum I see our role in this being clear, and critically important. Science needs to lead the […]

April 24th, 2017 Read full Story

Understanding climate risks makes us all less vulnerable – Dave Frame

Events like floods and droughts are not just figures in Treasury spreadsheets, writes Professor Dave Frame, the risks of them are changing and we need to understand how quickly they’re doing so. An excerpt (read in full): This comparison between the climate as it is today and as it might have been in a world […]

April 19th, 2017 Read full Story

Lies, dam(ned) lies and flood statistics – Ian Fuller

Massey University’s Associate Professor Ian Fuller says we need to build up knowledge of past flood events so that we can better understand the risk of future events. An excerpt (read in full): So, another “500-year” flood event in the Bay of Plenty. The last was in 2005 at Matata. Of course, this doesn’t mean that […]

April 18th, 2017 Read full Story


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