Video | Business Headlines | Internet | Science | Scientific Ethics | Technology | Search

 


Project On Risk From Volcanoes In Auckland

Project To Focus On Risk From Volcanoes In Auckland

A major research project is underway to improve the understanding of the vulnerability of the Auckland region to volcanic eruptions.

The aim of the seven-year, $5 million project is to better define Auckland’s volcanic risk using the latest geological techniques and sophisticated computer modelling. The information provided by the project, called ‘DEVORA’ (DEtermining VOlcanic Risk in Auckland), will help Auckland become better prepared for and safer from a future volcanic eruption by enabling better decision making to protect assets and reduce potential casualties.

Government-owned research and consultancy company GNS Science and the Institute of Earth Science and Engineering (IESE) at The University of Auckland will jointly lead the project, which will involve collaboration with a number of public and private sector organisations. The Earthquake Commission is providing initial funding.

Auckland is built on the Auckland Volcanic Field, a group of 50 volcanoes that have erupted over the last 250,000 years. Scientists believe that each volcano erupted only for a few months or years and then became extinct. However, knowledge of exactly when each volcano erupted, and how future eruptions might occur is incomplete.

The project will improve knowledge of the history of the Auckland volcanoes and the effects they have had on what is now Auckland City. A future volcano might erupt anywhere within Auckland, and likely effects are lava flows, hot ash and gas avalanches, fire fountains and ashfall. Auckland is also at risk from ash fall from distant eruptions at volcanoes in the central North Island, and DEVORA will improve understanding of this volcanic threat too.

There are three main strands to the research – physical models of how the volcanoes work, risk and hazards from the volcanoes, and the social and economic impacts. There are knowledge gaps in all these areas.

Joint Project Leader, Jan Lindsay from the IESE said the project was a step forward in improving the understanding of the risk to Auckland and Aucklanders from volcanoes.

“It’s not a matter of if, but when, and the more we know about volcanoes and the impact an eruption would have on our city, the better prepared Auckland can be,’’ Dr Lindsay said.

GNS Science Chief Executive, Alex Malahoff, said the collaboration between GNS Science and the IESE acknowledged the two centres of excellence in volcanic research.

“The collaboration will provide an unprecedented amount of information on the volcanic risk in the Auckland region. It is important to understand how the volcanic field might erupt in the future, so Auckland can continue to develop as a major economic hub in New Zealand and the Southwest Pacific,” Dr Malahoff said.

“The project is designed so that the information can be taken up readily and used in civil engineering, infrastructure planning, emergency management, and the insurance industry.”

The Earthquake Commission’s Chief Executive David Middleton said the research was needed because not enough was known about the risk of volcanic eruption in the Auckland region.

“It is important that conventional wisdom is not allowed to crowd out scientific advances. The better our understanding of the hazards we face, the better equipped we can become to deal with them,” Mr Middleton said.

“This work is based on the success of the ‘It’s Our Fault’ project in Wellington, where the risk of earthquake in Greater Wellington is being better assessed by a series of collaborations with industry, regional government and science institutions.”

END

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Fossils: Ancient Penguins Lived Alongside Dinosaurs?

Penguins are much older than previously thought and their evolution probably dates back to the days of the dinosaurs, according to research on the fossilised leg bone and toes of a giant ancient penguin found in rocks near Waipara, North Canterbury. More>>

No Voda/Sky: Commission Declines Clearance For Merger

The Commerce Commission has declined to grant clearance for the proposed merger of Sky Network Television and Vodafone New Zealand. More>>

ALSO:

EARLIER:

Power: IEA Report On New Zealand's Energy System

Outside of its largely low-carbon power sector, managing the economy’s energy intensity and greenhouse gas emissions while still remaining competitive and growing remains a challenge. More>>

ALSO:

NASA: Seven Earth-Size Planets Around A Single Star

NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope has revealed the first known system of seven Earth-size planets around a single star. Three of these planets are firmly located in the habitable zone, the area around the parent star where a rocky planet is most likely to have liquid water. More>>

ALSO:

Auckland Transport Case: Men Guilty Of Corruption And Bribery Will Spend Time In Jail

Two men who were found guilty of corruption and bribery in a Serious Fraud Office (SFO) trial have been sentenced in the Auckland High Court today... The pair are guilty of corruption and bribery offences relating to more than $1 million of bribes which took place between 2005 and 2013 at Rodney District Council and Auckland Transport. More>>

ALSO:

Hager Raid: Westpac Wrong To Release Bank Records To Police

The Privacy Commissioner has censured Westpac Banking Corp for releasing without a court order more than 10 months of bank records belonging to the political activist and journalist Nicky Hager during a police investigation into leaked information published in Hager's 2014 pre-election book, 'Dirty Politics'. More>>

ALSO:

EARLIER:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Sci-Tech
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news