Environment and Ecology

Could the world stop using fossils fuels today? - Climate: Explained

Guest Author Jun 03, 2020

Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz If we stopped oil, gas and coal extraction immediately – what would happen? What would we need to … Read More

New Zealand sits on top of the remains of a giant ancient volcanic plume - Guest Work

Guest Author May 28, 2020

Simon Lamb, Te Herenga Waka — Victoria University of Wellington and Timothy Stern, Te Herenga Waka — Victoria University of Wellington Back in the 1970s, scientists came up with a revolutionary idea about how Earth’s deep interior works. They proposed it is slowly churning like a lava lamp, with buoyant blobs rising as plumes of hot mantle rock from near … Read More

Honeycreepers in hawaii - BioBlog

Alison Campbell May 25, 2020

The 2015 Schol Bio paper included a question about a group of birds known as honeycreepers, specifically, the 56 species endemic to the Hawaiian islands. (Or, were endemic: 18, or perhaps 19, are still living; the others are extinct.) Students who’ve already had a look at this paper as part of their preparation for the exam will know that it included … Read More

Why we need to focus on increased consumption as much as population growth - Climate: Explained

Guest Author May 20, 2020

Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz Almost every threat to modern humanity can be traced simply to our out-of-control population growth (think about arable … Read More

What caused major climate change in the past? - Climate: Explained

Guest Author May 13, 2020

Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz Earth had several periods of high carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere and high temperatures over the last … Read More

A stoat trappers’ guide to elimination - COVID-19

Guest Author May 08, 2020

Dave Heatley New Zealanders have a lot of experience with islands and unwanted organisms – keeping them away, learning to live with them, and – in just a few cases – eliminating them. What can that experience tell us about plans to eliminate COVID-19? I can’t claim any expertise on polio, measles, Mycoplasma bovis or thar. But I do … Read More

Why higher carbon dioxide levels aren’t good news, even if some plants grow faster - Climate: Explained

Guest Author Apr 30, 2020

Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz If carbon dioxide levels were to double, how much increase in plant growth would this cause? How much of … Read More

COVID-19 and the global climate emergency - COVID-19

Guest Author Apr 22, 2020

Associate Professor Simon Hales Living in 21st century New Zealand, it is easy to lose sight of the reality that human societies are embedded in a planetary ecosystem, upon which all life on Earth ultimately depends. Human cleverness beguiles us into believing that technology will always provide the answers to human needs. But the Covid-19 pandemic has brought … Read More

Alarming decrease in calves increases fears for endangered Hector’s dolphin - Unsorted

Otago Marine Science Mar 31, 2020

Prof Elisabeth Slooten, Prof Steve Dawson This has been a terrible summer for Hector’s dolphins. The first indication was very low numbers of dolphin sightings during late spring and early summer. The Otago University Marine Mammal Research Team has carried out routine dolphin surveys at Banks Peninsula for more than 30 years. In all that time, we have never seen … Read More

Auckland Bike Life - Chthonic Wildlife Ramblings

Brendan Moyle Feb 11, 2020

Once again the Aotearoa Bike Challenge is on us, and once again I’m participating. In principle this is not hard because it does not represent a significant switch in behavior for me. I already bike nearly every day. The Bicycle The fascinating thing about cycling is the realisation that this is not an archaic form of transport. The bicycle is … Read More