News

Climate change felt in the Pacific now, not in 100 years

Sarah-Jane O'Connor Feb 15, 2016

Anote Tong wants to build a sea wall around a church. It’s the only thing remaining in a Kiribatian village: the rest has been washed away by the rising sea. “There is a village where the people are all gone, because there is no village.” The President of the Republic of Kiribati says the church needs a sea wall to … Read More

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What are the real risks of Zika?

Guest Work Feb 11, 2016

Michael Selgelid, Monash University and Euzebiusz Jamrozik, Monash University Zika has raised alarm bells worldwide, prompting the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) declaration of a “public health emergency”, El Salvador’s dramatic recommendation that women delay pregnancy for two years, and the US Centres for Disease Control’s (CDC) recommendation that pregnant women consider postponing travel to … Read More

“Science on trial” highlighted poor communication

Sarah-Jane O'Connor Feb 05, 2016

Convicting scientists for manslaughter following the L’Aquila earthquake wasn’t “science on trial” but a failing of communication, one of the seismologists says. Giulio Selvaggi spent nearly a year of his life in an Italian courtroom as he and five other scientists were tried for the manslaughter of 33 victims of the 2009 L’Aquila earthquake. Their eventual conviction had a chilling … Read More

Climate link to huge human upheaval

Sarah-Jane O'Connor Feb 05, 2016

New DNA evidence suggests a major upheaval of humans living around Europe at the end of the last Ice Age, apparently linked to severe climatic instability. Les Closeaux at Rueil-Malmaison, Paris Basin, France. L. Lang Ancient bones and teeth of people who lived in Europe over the span of 30,000 years were used to establish this unknown period of … Read More

Zika virus updates

Sarah-Jane O'Connor Feb 04, 2016

As more information comes in about Zika virus and its risks, we will continue to update this page with posts from our bloggers and guest work. New evidence supporting a link between Zika virus infection and microcephaly, Siouxsie Wiles, Infectious Thoughts. Zika: a potential new mozzie vector?, Siouxsie Wiles, Infectious Thoughts. Read More

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Antipodean wandering albatross continues to dive

Sarah-Jane O'Connor Feb 01, 2016

Numbers of the Antipodean wandering albatross have continued to fall, according to New Zealand researchers who visit the birds’ main breeding island every summer. The population has been monitored since 1994 and in a brief report to New Zealand’s Department of Conservation (DOC) in December, scientists Graeme Elliott and Kath Walker warned that the population has continued to … Read More

2015 hottest year on record

Sarah-Jane O'Connor Jan 21, 2016

It was signposted all year, but North American agencies have confirmed: 2015 was the hottest year since records began in 1880. NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) analysis showed that global surface air temperatures continued a long trend upward: 15 of the 16 warmest years on record have occurred since 2001. Globally-averaged temperatures in 2015 surpassed … Read More

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Calls for tighter reins on Japanese whaling

Sarah-Jane O'Connor Jan 21, 2016

With Japanese whalers back in the Southern Ocean and minke whales in their sights, scientists are calling for tighter reviews on the supposed scientific basis for the hunts. In a correspondence piece written to Nature, a group of representatives from the International Whaling Commission (IWC) called the science behind Japan’s hunts into question. Japanese whalers have a target of … Read More