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Prime Minister Helen Clark last night launched a major New Zealand scientific voyage to Antarctica as part of the Census of Antarctic Marine Life (CAML) and International Polar Year (IPY).

Twenty-six scientists and 18 crew will leave this week on the eight-week voyage aboard RV Tangaroa.

Scientists from NIWA are undertaking a unique experiment with Surf Life Saving New Zealand to investigate the behaviour of rips. The experiment, scheduled for 22 January, will follow a surf lifeguard carried along by rips at Raglan beach.

A 4.4 metre female great white shark has set a new distance record for a New Zealand shark by swimming over 3000km to the tropical waters of the southern Great Barrier Reef, Australia. The shark, nicknamed Kerri, has provided the first evidence that New Zealand great whites do in fact travel to Australia.

The epicentre of the 20 Dec 2007 MW6.6 earthquake that shook the East Coast of the North Island last night was offshore only 50 km SSE of Gisborne, beneath the New Zealand continental slope.

Global carbon dioxide emissions would need to be 50–85% below 2000 levels by 2050 to keep eventual global warming to about two degrees above pre-industrial levels.

New Zealand’s glaciers are shrinking and twelve of the largest glaciers in the Southern Alps are unlikely to return to their earlier lengths without extraordinary cooling of the climate.

Two hundred of the world’s leading marine biologists will gather in Auckland from 14-16 November to share the latest insights on sea-life from the poles to the tropics. This major meeting of the global research programme, the Census of Marine Life, is being jointly hosted by NIWA and The University of Auckland.

NIWA is leading a new three-year research project to investigate the contaminant levels and risk to Māori health associated with ‘wild kai’ – food gathered from the sea (kai moana), rivers (kai awa), and lakes (kai roto).

Two hundred of the world’s leading marine biologists will gather in Auckland from 14-16 November to share the latest insights on marine life from the poles to the tropics.

NIWA would like to congratulate New Zealand scientists for their contribution to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

Over $8000 worth of prizes will be awarded to school students in the Auckland region as part of the annual Auckland Regional Science & Technology Fair, sponsored by NIWA.

Research funded by the Australian Government will investigate tsunamis on the west coast of New Zealand to help understand how much risk they pose to Australia.

Although the recent earthquakes south of New Zealand caused little more than a ripple on Australian shores, researchers estimate that more than 300,000 lives and property worth more than $150bn on the NSW coast are vulnerable to large tsunamis. At present, however, scientists do not have a clear idea about how often such tsunamis occur and how big they might be.

Scientists have discovered that some deepsea sponges have growth bands that, like tree rings, can reveal past environmental conditions. The bands show that, far from being a constant environment, the deep ocean experiences changes akin to seasons.

It has travelled over 65 000 nautical miles, endured big seas, and even survived a harbour-side raid by pirates, all to deploy ocean-profiling Argo floats.

Weak La Niña conditions are likely to alter the chances of tropical cyclone activity for several tropical South Pacific countries over coming months. NIWA and Pacific meteorological organisations are urging island communities to remain prepared as there is always a risk.

Over $5000 worth of prizes will be awarded to school students in the Nelson region as part of the 16th annual Nelson Regional Science & Technology Fair, sponsored by NIWA.

NIWA fisheries scientists will survey blue cod in the Marlborough Sounds and Tasman and Golden Bays during September and October, starting on 5 September.

Over $7,000 worth of prizes will be awarded to school students in the BOP region as part of the 31st annual BOP Regional Science & Technology Fair, sponsored by NIWA.

Hundreds of young scientists are to showcase their talent at Victoria University in the annual NIWA Wellington Regional Science and Technology Fair, held from 22–25 August.

Over $6000 worth of prizes will be awarded to school students in the Waikato region as part of the 28th annual Waikato Regional Science & Technology Fair, sponsored by NIWA.

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