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

 

Climate change and swine flu dominated coverage

SMC Briefing Alert
18/12/09
IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Climate change and swine flu dominated coverage

The swine flu pandemic and climate change were the two biggest science-related issues covered in the New Zealand media in 2009, according to the Science Media Centre's Media Tracker report published today.

The top 10 list of science-related stories picked up in the New Zealand media covers everything from October's devastating tsunamis in Samoa to the debut of Chief Science Advisor Professor Sir Peter Gluckman to debate over aerial drops of 1080 poison.

Using data from Meltwater News and its own media logs, the SMC was able to take a snapshot of science coverage in the media in 2009. The SMC has also rated the quality of media coverage on these issues, with results ranging from poor to excellent.

"The media did a pretty good job covering the science angles during the swine flu pandemic and on news events like the tsunamis in Samoa and Auckland's toxic beach issue," says SMC manager Peter Griffin.

"But when it comes to climate change, the media really needs to up its game. Often the good work of environment reporters in the news section is undone by columnists working for the same publication, who at best gloss over the science and at worst misinform their readers," he adds.

The SMC noted that in controversial science-related stories during the year, such as the plan to fortify bread with folic acid, scientists were often marginalised in favour of activists and lobby groups.

"Scientists need to get better at stepping forward when issues they are expert on are under the media spotlight. Too often the talking heads chosen by the media have an agenda to push and are willing to twist the science for their own ends."

The SMC worked with hundreds of scientists during the year, quoting them in round-ups of expert comment and in briefings for the media. In October it also established Sciblogs.co.nz - the largest science blogging network in Australasia, featuring scientists writing on their areas of expertise.

Top 10 NZ science-related stories of 2009

1. Swine flu media frenzy

2. Poles apart on climate change

3. Folic acid debate

4. Pseudoephedrine ban

5. Low immunisation rates

6. Auckland's toxic beaches

7. Chief Science Advisor's debut

8. Devastating tsunamis

9. GM breaches

10. Anti-1080 campaign

Click here to download the report.

You can also download the Science Media Centre Annual Review for 2009 here.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Westpac: Sets Out Plan To Go Cheque-Free

Westpac NZ has announced details of its plan to phase out cheques, after signalling in May that it would be supporting a move to other forms of payment. Cheques will cease to be available as a means of payment after 25 June 2021. Westpac NZ General ... More>>

ALSO:

NZTA: Major New Zealand Upgrade Programme Projects Go To Tender

Two major New Zealand Upgrade Programme projects are beginning tenders for construction. The New Zealand Upgrade Programme is a $6.8 billion investment to get our cities moving, to save lives and boost productivity in growth areas. The first Auckland ... More>>

Reserve Bank: RBNZ Seeks To Preserve Benefits Of Cash

The Reserve Bank – Te Pūtea Matua is taking on a new role of steward of the cash system “to preserve the benefits of cash for all who need them”, Assistant Governor Christian Hawkesby told the Royal Numismatics Society of New Zealand annual conference ... More>>

ALSO:

Economy: Double-Dip Recession Next Year, But Housing Rolls On

New Zealand's economy is expected to slip back into recession early next year as delayed job losses, falling consumer spending, and the absence of international tourists bites into growth. More>>

ALSO:

Microsoft New Zealand: Microsoft Expands “Highway To A Hundred Unicorns” Initiative To Support Startups In Asia Pacific

New Zealand, 14 October 2020 – Today Microsoft for Startups launches the Highway to a Hundred Unicorns initiative in Asia Pacific to strengthen the region’s startup ecosystem. This follows the initiative’s success in India, where 56 startups were ... More>>

Fonterra: Farmers Taking Another Step Towards New Zealand’s Low Emissions Food Production

They’re hot off the press and intended to help take the heat out of climate change. Fonterra farmers are already among the world’s most sustainable producers of milk and now have an additional tool in their sustainability toolbox. Over the last few ... More>>

ALSO:



Courts: Businessman Eric Watson Sentenced To A Four-Month Jail Term

New Zealand businessman Eric Watson has been sentenced to a four-month jail term in the UK for contempt of court, TVNZ reports. More>>

OECD: Area Employment Rate Falls By 4.0 Percentage Points, To 64.6% In Second Quarter Of 2020

The OECD area employment rate – the share of the working-age population with jobs – fell by 4.0 percentage points, to 64.6%, in the second quarter of 2020, its lowest level since the fourth quarter of 2010. Across the OECD area, 560 million persons ... More>>

Spark: Turns On 5G In Auckland And Offers A Glimpse Into The Future Of Smart Cities

Spark turned on 5G in downtown Auckland today and has partnered with Auckland Transport (AT) to showcase some of the latest in IoT (Internet of Things) technology and demonstrate what the future could look like for Auckland’s CBD with the power of 5G. 5G is ... More>>

Stats NZ: Monthly Migration Remains Low

Since the border closed in late-March 2020, net migration has averaged about 300 a month, Stats NZ said today. In the five months from April to August 2020, overall net migration was provisionally estimated at 1,700. This was made up of a net gain ... More>>

University of Canterbury: Proglacial Lakes Are Accelerating Glacier Ice Loss

Lake Tasman, New Zealand | 2016 | Photo: Dr Jenna Sutherland Meltwater lakes that form at glacier margins cause ice to recede much further and faster compared to glaciers that terminate on land, according to a new study. But the effects of these glacial ... More>>

ALSO:

Dairy: Fonterra Sells China Farms

Fonterra has agreed to sell its China farms for a total of $555 million (RMB 2.5 billion*1), after successfully developing the farms alongside local partners. Inner Mongolia Natural Dairy Co., Ltd, a subsidiary of China Youran Dairy Group Limited ... More>>

ALSO: