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Expert Reactions

Ozone levels still decreasing away from poles – Expert Reaction

Tessa Evans posted in on February 7th, 2018.

While the ozone holes in the poles are recovering, ozone levels are still dropping everywhere else between Russia to the Southern Ocean (between 60⁰N and 60⁰S), according to international research published in the journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics.  While ozone levels in the upper atmosphere have been recovering near the poles in recent years, this new […]

Ross Sea region Marine Protected Area – Expert reaction

Tessa Evans posted in on November 30th, 2017.

Sweeping new protections for Antarctica’s Ross Sea will come into effect on Friday 1 December.  After five years of debate, the marine protected area (MPA) was agreed in 2016 after a joint proposal by New Zealand and the United States was unanimously voted in by the 25 members of the Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources. Over 1.5 […]

Methane emissions from burning fossil fuels higher than expected – In the News

Sarah-Jane O'Connor posted in on August 24th, 2017.

Researchers looking at air trapped within Antarctic ice have found humans are putting more methane into the atmosphere through fossil fuel emissions than previously thought. Using ice cores from Antarctica’s Taylor Glacier, an international team of researchers – including New Zealand and Australian scientists – measured natural rates of methane in the atmosphere over the […]

Larsen C iceberg breaks away – Expert Reaction

Sarah-Jane O'Connor posted in on July 13th, 2017.

After weeks of teasing, a trillion-tonne iceberg has calved off the Larsen C ice shelf into the sea. A UK scientist who has been monitoring the ice shelf cautioned that it was too early to blame the calving of the ice shelf to human-generated climate change, and the event “may simply be a rare but natural occurrence”. […]

Summer arrives along with Antarctic research – In the News

Sarah-Jane O'Connor posted in on December 5th, 2016.

With the summer season kicking off, it’s not all BBQs and beaches: many scientists are heading south for the Antarctic research season. As Kiwi scientists head to the ice, they’ve featured in New Zealand media – especially given astronaut Buzz Aldrin’s emergency evacuation from the South Pole to Christchurch, where he is recuperating from symptoms […]

Ross Sea gets protected area – In the News

Sarah-Jane O'Connor posted in on October 31st, 2016.

At its annual meeting in Hobart last week, the Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR) unanimously agreed to a proposal from New Zealand and the United States to establish a marine protected area in Antarctica’s Ross Sea. The protected area would cover roughly 1.55 million square kilometres, including 1.12 million km2 […]

Antarctic glaciers in hot water – Expert Reaction

Sarah-Jane O'Connor posted in on October 26th, 2016.

Hundreds of metres of solid ice were lost from West Antarctica’s glaciers between 2002 and 2009, according to a US-led study published today in Nature Communications. Warm ocean waters beneath ice shelves are linked to melting the ice from below, but the effect is difficult to measure. Using data collected from a NASA airborne study, […]

Leaf fossils hold clues for melting Antarctic ice – In the News

Tessa Evans posted in on October 21st, 2016.

Buried in sediment under an ancient crater lake in Central Otago, fossilised leaves have helped Kiwi researchers find the long-term effects of increasing CO2 levels on melting Antarctic ice. Preserved in sediment containing no oxygen to aid decomposition, the sediment cores were essentially stacked annual layers similar to tree ring or ice cores. Studying the […]

Antarctic ice may melt faster than expected – In the News

John Kerr posted in on February 23rd, 2016.

Antarctica’s large land-based ice sheets may be more vulnerable to increasing global temperatures than previously thought, according to new research from New Zealand, US and European scientists. Analysing drill cores of Antarctic rock, they found that Antarctica became its warmest ever 15 million years ago  when carbon dioxide levels were 500ppm – only slightly higher […]

Antarctic marine protection bids fail – Expert reaction

John Kerr posted in on November 2nd, 2015.

Two proposals to establish Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) in Antarctic waters have failed to be adopted by the Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR) at its annual meeting in Hobart. Proposals for MPAs in the Ross Sea and the East Antarctic coastal region were discussed, but the required final consensus by […]

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