Crikey Creek

NZ’s no 8 wire, corroding

Daniel Collins Nov 03, 2009

Fellow SciBlogger Shaun Hendy is in the news with his interesting analysis of OECD patents. Our no 8 wire mentality might not be so spectacular after all. Internationally, NZ is behind the curve for two reasons: low funding and a small population. Our R&D funding as a portion of GDP is well below the OECD average, though at this … Read More

Probing the depths of snow

Daniel Collins Nov 01, 2009

Yesterday I went to Temple Basin, not to ski but to measure snow. In contrast with Spain, the rain and snow in New Zealand falls mainly in the mountains. Moisture-laden air, a lot from the Tasman, hits the mountains and is forced to rise. A combination of pressure and temperature changes force the moisture to become the rain or … Read More

Science news haikus

Daniel Collins Oct 30, 2009

In the spirit of the scientific abstract: Science news haikus Science Groundwater recharge How it changes with climate Could be good or bad Virtual water Maps inefficienct usage In SADC New Zealand CRI taskforce Purpose, governance, funding Bring home the bacon Wild rivers campaign Advocating solitions … Read More

Peter Gleick on peak water

Daniel Collins Oct 27, 2009

In an analogous way to peak oil, peak water refers to a peak in the production of usable water. There are differences, sure: water is mostly renewable. But where water is essentially non-renewable, such as with fossil groundwater, the analogy is spot on. Where water is renewable, the analogy is still very useful. The peak denotes the point where the … Read More

MfE groundwater report: “Propaganda” or misunderstood?

Daniel Collins Oct 22, 2009

The Ministry for the Environment released a report yesterday on New Zealand’s groundwater quality, prepared by Geological and Nuclear Sciences Ltd. Today, I read in the Christchurch Press that the report concludes that “groundwater quality has no significant relationship with land use”. What’s more, Green Party co-leader Russel Norman called it “propaganda”. Bold claims indeed. Fortunately we can … Read More

Calling for a Cambrian explosion of ideas

Daniel Collins Oct 19, 2009

Fellow SciBling Grant Jacobs has an interesting suggestion for improving media coverage of technical issues. He calls it sidebar science. A scientist-developed information box is appended to an online news article for further reading. I like the multi-level approach. It’s like a choose your on adventure novel, where you decide what is TMI. This needn’t be limited to science … Read More