Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search


Sunsmart Groups Stand Behind UV Index

Sunsmart Groups Stand Behind UV Index

The Cancer Society, SunSmart, National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research, MetService and academic institutions are standing firmly behind their support of the introduction of the Ultraviolet Index UVI as a replacement for burn time.

Freelance weather consultant Augie Auer has stated on radio and in print that the newly introduced UV I is confusing.

He accused the groups of “jumping on the bandwagon” of the new approach to warning of sun potential damage which was developed by the World Health Organisation.

But the groups supporting the measure, which is represented by a simple fan shape with coloured, numbered bands to indicate level of risk, say the UV I is clearly a safer and more scientific measure than burn time.

“The UV I is an absolute – it tells you how much ultraviolet radiation there is in the atmosphere. It’s the same for everybody, and everybody can use that information to judge the behaviour they should take individually for that particular level of radiation,” says Wendy Billingsley, Cancer Society SunSmart spokesperson.

“Burn time gave people the message they could stay out safely in the sun for a certain length of time without burning. Try putting an eighteen-month-old fair skinned baby in the sun along side a 40-year-old weatherbeaten bloke for the same length of ‘burn time’ and see who ends up with blisters,” Ms Billingsley says.

The Cancer Society and the Health Sponsorship Council SunSmart brand have developed a website which makes the information relevant to individuals – according to their age, and skin type.

The WHO recommendation was not adopted without thorough research undertaken in New Zealand by the Social and Behavioural Research in Cancer Group at the Dunedin School of Medicine which reported its findings in December 2002.

The research involved a strong contingent of weather media and well as the general population in focus groups and came up with a number of recommendations. These included that New Zealand adopt the WHO UV Index international guidelines and that the index be supported with behavioural sun protection messages.

“We have been working with NIWA, The MetService and other interested groups for many months to develop a way to present the UV Index in a way that is acceptable to New Zealanders and easily understood so they can protect themselves in the appropriate way from the risk of skin cancer. It is disappointing that Mr Auer is telling New Zealanders they aren’t smart enough to be SunSmart.”

The SunSmart website address is

© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


Hospitality NZ: Hospitality Wages Jump 9% To Pass Living Wage
Wages and salaries across the hospitality sector continue to increase despite businesses having to battle through some of the toughest trading periods in living memory... More>>

Climate Leaders Coalition: Launches New Statement Of Ambition, Appoints New CEO Convenor

The Climate Leaders Coalition is tonight officially launching a new Statement of Ambition to accelerate business action on climate change... More>>

Retail: New Law Paves Way For Greater Supermarket Competition

Legislation that bans major supermarkets from blocking their competitors’ access to land to set up new stores paves the way for greater competition in the sector, Minister of Commerce and Consumer Affairs Dr David Clark said... More>>

MYOB: New Data Shows Increase In SMEs Experiencing Stress And Anxiety

The lingering impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic have led to a surge in the number of local SME owners and operators experiencing stress and anxiety, according to new research from business management platform, MYOB... More>>

Carbonz: Cashing In On Carbon: The New Marketplace Helping Native Forest To Thrive

The country’s first voluntary carbon credit marketplace, Carbonz, is here to restore native biodiversity and help Aotearoa reach its carbon zero goals by selling the first carbon credits exclusively from native forest... More>>
Entrust District: Dividend Will Be Welcomed After Another Tough Year
We’ve all heard of the saying; “if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is” but for Aucklanders within the Entrust District, getting their share of Entrust’s 2022 annual dividend payment really is as good as it sounds... More>>