Environment and Ecology

The St Vincent eruption is a reminder of how volcano research and monitoring can save lives - News

Guest Author Apr 23, 2021

Silvio De Angelis, University of Liverpool and Janine Kavanagh, University of Liverpool Volcanic eruptions come with a variety of hazards, depending on the type of volcano and its magma. Some have effusive eruptions, where lava flows constantly, while others can expel large clouds of fragments of magma and gases – volcanic ash – into the atmosphere. For some of the … Read More

Seedkeeping can connect people with their roots and preserve crops for future generations - Guest Work

Guest Author Apr 23, 2021

Natalie Jesionka, University of Toronto “All seeds are sacred, these seeds are connected to 10,000 years of human relationship to the land,” says Owen Taylor, co-founder of Philadelphia-based Truelove Seeds, who sells vegetable, herb and flower seeds that tell ancestral and regional stories. He adds, “seedkeeping refers to not just the saving of seeds, but also the keeping of … Read More

If we want to improve NZ’s freshwater quality, first we need to improve the quality of our democracy - News

Guest Author Apr 23, 2021

Nicolas Pirsoul, University of Auckland and Maria Armoudian, University of Auckland Since the fatal Havelock North campylobacter outbreak in 2016, freshwater quality has rightfully been a major political issue in Aotearoa New Zealand. Pipes bursting in Wellington, lead contamination in Otago and concerns about tolerable levels of nitrates in the country’s drinking water are all signs … Read More

Climate explained: what was the Medieval warm period? - Climate: Explained

Guest Author Apr 22, 2021

  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 What was the Medieval warm period? What caused it, and did carbon dioxide play a role? … Read More

NZ’s next large Alpine Fault quake is likely coming sooner than we thought, study shows - Hot off the press

Guest Author Apr 20, 2021

Jamie Howarth, Te Herenga Waka — Victoria University of Wellington and Rupert Sutherland, Te Herenga Waka — Victoria University of Wellington The Alpine Fault marks the boundary between the Pacific and Australian plates in the South Island of New Zealand. Author provided The chances of New Zealand’s Alpine Fault rupturing in a damaging earthquake in the next 50 years are … Read More

Demand for rare-earth metals is skyrocketing, so we’re creating a safer, cleaner way to recover them from old phones and laptops - Guest Work

Guest Author Apr 20, 2021

Cristina Pozo-Gonzalo, Deakin University Rare-earth metals are critical to the high-tech society we live in as an essential component of mobile phones, computers and many other everyday devices. But increasing demand and limited global supply means we must urgently find a way to recover these metals efficiently from discarded products. Rare-earth metals are currently mined or recovered via traditional e-waste … Read More

Why did New Zealand’s CO2 emissions blow out so spectacularly in 2019? - Planetary Ecology

Robert McLachlan Apr 18, 2021

Every year in April, the trees start changing colour, the clocks go back an hour, and the national greenhouse gas figures are released and promptly forgotten. They take fifteen months to prepare, so by the time they come out it’s very easy for commentators to point out that they are out of date. Even now that the national media are … Read More

Forensics and ship logs solve a 200-year mystery about where the first kiwi specimen was collected - Hot off the press

Guest Author Apr 14, 2021

Paul Scofield, University of Canterbury and Vanesa De Pietri, University of Canterbury The flightless kiwi is an iconic bird for New Zealanders, but all five species are threatened by habitat loss and introduced predators. Recent genomic analysis focused on one species, the South Island brown kiwi or tokoeka, suggests several as yet undescribed lineages. Before these can be fully … Read More

Getting to Net Zero - The Dismal Science

Eric Crampton Apr 12, 2021

We have not been fans of the Climate Change Commission’s draft report. New Zealand has an Emissions Trading Scheme with a binding cap, and a declining path for net emissions in the covered sector. Measures taken within the covered sector cannot reduce net emissions. NZU not purchased by one sector get purchased and used by another. Regulatory measures around coal boilers … Read More