You know we’re back into the swing of things when you start doing your regular science chats around the country. As per last year I’ll be chatting to ABC Mid North Coast (Port Macquarie) each Wednesday at 10:10 am (new time), ABC Western Plains (Dubbo) each Wednesday fortnight at 10:35 am, and ABC Central West (Orange) each Tuesday fortnight at 9:35 am. I’m also adding ABC Western Victoria (Bendigo) to my roll call – alternative Wednesday at 10:35 am.
Last week I had my first spot with Angela Owens at ABC Central West. We talked about tiny hard drives and how increased levels of carbon dioxide affects brain activity in fish.
Every Wednesday morning (around 9:40 am AEST) I chat with the wonderful Katya Quigley from ABC Mid North Coast NSW (Port Macquaire).
I love chatting to Katya as she always asks what I’m up to and what I think about topics that they’ve been discussing earlier on air.
Recently, Katya and Beth (wonderful producer) have started posting our conversations online. Here is the first one where we talk about a a development in the treatment of snake bites and explore the link between volcanoes and atmospheric levels of carbon dioxide.
Recently I was asked to write another piece for The Drum – the ABC’s online analysis and opinion website. This time the topic was climate change.
So here’s the first few pars. The rest you can read by clicking on the link below.
Heat rises in the search for temperature data truth
When it comes to climate change either you’re with us, or you’re on the other side. Well at least that’s how it appears at times. So what happens when someone from one camp says something that appears to support the other?
In the last few days, pro- and anti-climate change blogs have gone into overdrive over comments made at a US Congressional hearing into climate science.
To understand what it’s all about, you need to go back to November 2009. One of the biggest science stories that month was the ‘leaking’ of emails from the Hadley Climate Research Unit (CRU) at the University of East Anglia, including the unit’s head Professor Phil Jones.
Recently I received a call from ABC North Tasmania asking if I would chat about ‘sense of direction’. A quick search of our news archives revealed we had at least three interesting stories. So I agreed to speak with the breakfast presenter Penny Terry at 6:20 am (what I do for science).
It’s always interesting when you come across a paper that makes you say to yourself ‘Yeah! That makes sense’. I had that feeling last week when I saw this one pop up on the pre-press website arXiv.org.
Dr Timo Nieminen of the University of Queensland explores why armies in China and Mongolia persisted with bows and arrows, despite inventing gunpowder. He concluded that it was the composite bow – a complex construction that took a year to build and was far superior to firearms up to the 17th century – that kept them shooting arrows at their enemies.
I’m a bit late in putting this up, but during the federal election campign I wrote two stories on the Labor and Coalition science policies.
Both were similar in their approach, which guaranteed funding for science communication, a commitment to international scientific collaboration and support for the CSIRO.
The Greens were critical of both policies for failing to mention research into renewable technologies, while the Australian Academy of Science and the Federdation of Scientific and Technological Societies lamented the lack of any increase in funding for research.
Even though the election has been run and ‘won’, you’ll find links to both articles below.