International pressure, not national leadership, is driving Australian companies to aim for net zero

While the Nationals drag their heels over whether they will commit to Scott Morrison’s net zero by 2050 policy, Australia’s agriculture and mining sectors are already getting stuck-in to their own net zero targets. The recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C laid down a dire warning about … Continue reading International pressure, not national leadership, is driving Australian companies to aim for net zero

Nature is for everyone

The outdoors has something for everyone, but is nature accessible to all? This panel explores the diverse value of nature, some of the barriers South Australians experience in accessing it, and showcases programs that are working to make it easier for everyone to connect to nature. Cosmos presents this recording from South Australia’s Nature Festival … Continue reading Nature is for everyone

Trolling, abuse of scientists during the pandemic

Around one in five Australian scientists surveyed by the Australian Science Media Centre (AusSMC) say they’ve experienced abuse including death threats and/or threats of physical or sexual violence after speaking to the media about COVID-19. The survey results represent the experiences of the 50 scientists who chose to respond. They are not a random sample … Continue reading Trolling, abuse of scientists during the pandemic

How can Australia safely return to work after COVID lockdowns?

As New South Wales approaches the 80% double-dose target, restrictions will ease in the next few weeks, and most businesses are expected to reopen. Although the high vaccination rate is highly encouraging, increasing people’s movements and mingling might result in a surge of COVID-19 cases. The NSW Government has developed COVID Safety Plans for workplaces … Continue reading How can Australia safely return to work after COVID lockdowns?

ASEAN nations join forces to imagine the “next big things”

What will the South-East Asian region look like in 2040? What are the big drivers of change happening now? The COVID-19 pandemic has underlined the need for future preparedness like never before. Like well-practised regions such as Europe, the ASEAN region is now building foresight capacity so it can build a shared vision of the … Continue reading ASEAN nations join forces to imagine the “next big things”

Lost in translation: linguistic diversity could save biodiversity

The extinction crisis is one of the greatest challenges currently facing our planet. According to new research, tapping into the information held in studies published in languages other than English could be key to the fight against species and biodiversity loss. The study, published in PLOS Biology, reviewed over 400,000 papers published in 16 other … Continue reading Lost in translation: linguistic diversity could save biodiversity

The politics of nature

These days, everything feels like a partisan issue, be it immigration, national security, renewable energy or even lockdowns. More and more decision making seems to feel like a political football, even if it doesn’t make sense. Despite its history, a basic concern for the environment seems to have been caught in this trend and in … Continue reading The politics of nature

Cities of the future

How does where you live affect your health? Those of us who live in cities probably don’t notice the thought – or lack of thought – that has gone into city planning, but a growing body of research is paying close attention, striving to make cities healthier and more sustainable. This is a particularly urgent … Continue reading Cities of the future

Scorching cities: Deadly urban heat has tripled

The world is heating up, and cities are bearing the brunt of it. A new study of more than 13,000 cities has found that exposure to a deadly combination of heat and humidity has tripled since the 1980s. The trend affects nearly a quarter of the world’s population, according to the research, which appears in … Continue reading Scorching cities: Deadly urban heat has tripled

Satellite mapping is preparing Australian cities for a warming earth | Cosmos Weekly Taster

This article on Satellite mapping for future cities first appeared in Cosmos Weekly on 17 September 2021. For more stories like this, subscribe to Cosmos Weekly. Imagine you’re an urban planner, worried about your city’s resilience in the face of the growing threat of climate change. You’ve seen research that shows urban environments – particularly neighbourhoods without … Continue reading Satellite mapping is preparing Australian cities for a warming earth | Cosmos Weekly Taster

Australia: The still-not-so-clever country

Progress in science and innovation in Australia can be summed up in the French expression: Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose. The more things change, the more they remain the same. There are opportunities for things to change, building on the scientific successes in addressing the pandemic, and as businesses restructure in challenging … Continue reading Australia: The still-not-so-clever country

Not a science story: education in Afghanistan

In Afghanistan, Farkhondeh Akbari’s friends and family members are burning their hard-won degrees and diplomas. They are their proudest achievements, and yet they are now also among their most dangerous possessions. For Akbari, who fled Afghanistan with her family when she was eight, spending time in Pakistan and Iran before arriving in Australia in the … Continue reading Not a science story: education in Afghanistan