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Tasman Lake, which is fed by melt water from the retreating Tasman Glacier, photographed in March this year. Trevor Chinn

New Zealand’s Southern Alps have lost a third of their ice

A third of the permanent snow and ice of New Zealand’s Southern Alps has now disappeared, according to our new research based on National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research aerial surveys. Since…
Revelations of secret Trade in Services Agreement talks have brought them from the shadows. Image sourced from www.shutterstock.com

Wikileaks brings much-needed scrutiny to secret trade talks

Wikileaks has shone the light yet again on behind-the-scenes manoeuvres by a core of governments seeking to advance a free market agenda in the guise of “trade”. The leaked text on financial services is…
Cry, the beloved country. Pakistan mourns the victims of Karachi airport attacks. EPA/Shahzaib Akber

Pakistan’s failing state is too weak to tackle the Taliban

Reports that Pakistan has launched an offensive against militants in North Waziristan come after years of pressure from the West for Islamabad to deal with the wild border region which has for many years…
Narendra Modi’s mandate, crossing caste, region, gender and demography, will make him one of the most powerful prime ministers in Indian history. EPA/Harish Tyagi

Just who is Narendra Modi, India’s man of the moment?

India’s election, which was won convincingly by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), revolved around only one man: India’s next prime minister, Narendra Damodardas Modi. Modi represents a fascinating turning…
The tiny Pacific nation of the Marshall Islands could avoid being swamped entirely, although it will still suffer profoundly from sea-level rise. Christopher Johnson/Wikimedia Commons

Dynamic atolls give hope that Pacific Islands can defy sea rise

It is widely predicted that low-lying coral reef islands will drown as a result of sea-level rise, leaving their populations as environmental refugees. But new evidence now suggests that these small islands…
New Zealand has increased its GST several times since it was introduced, so why does Australia find it so hard? Image sourced from www.shutterstock.com

Easy as, bro - raising the GST, New Zealand style

When long-time Kiwi expat John Clarke was asked why he left New Zealand, he said: “Because it was there.” Clarke at least knew what being “there” meant, in contrast to most of his new compatriots, whose…
At loggerheads: but Obama and Putin must come to terms over Crimea. EPA/Alexei Nikolsky/RIA Novosti/Kremlin Pool

Despite rhetoric, Russia and US can’t afford another Cold War

The United States has denounced the Russian involvement in Crimea as “a brazen military incursion” and its annexation of the territory as “nothing more than a land grab” by Moscow. In the pre-referendum…
Within eight months of taking office, South Korean president Park Geun-Hye embraced her predecessor’s green growth strategy and now champions the so-called Green Growth 2.0 policies. EPA/Kim Min-Hee

Green Growth: rebooted in South Korea, booted out in Australia

Like Australia, South Korea had a change of government last year. And like Australia’s, Korea’s new government was keen to distance itself from its predecessors’ legacies – particularly its “Green Growth…
Stormy weather hits New Zealand’s capital, Wellington. Flickr.com/wiifm69 (Sean Hamlin)

An insider’s story of the global attack on climate science

A recent headline – Failed doubters trust leaves taxpayers six-figure loss – marked the end of a four-year epic saga of secretly-funded climate denial, harassment of scientists and tying-up of valuable…
People report symptoms from wind farms even when the wind turbines aren’t in operation. Image from shutterstock.com

Wind turbines don’t make you feel sick or healthy, but spin can

Despite at least 19 reviews of the scientific evidence universally concluding that exposure to wind farm sound doesn’t trigger adverse health effects, people continue to report feeling unwell because they…
Not only has the way we look at our mobile devices changed, but they’re starting to look back at us. andres.thor

Apple’s Touch ID: time to come to grips with a touchy subject

Apple’s latest and greatest - the iPhone 5s - met a muted reception last week in San Francisco. Although the device’s admittedly evolutionary-not-revolutionary updates target early adopters and high-end…
Details have emerged of the US National Security Agency’s anti-cryptography effort, via whistleblower Edward Snowden. Ole Spata/EPA

NSA breaches a new level of social contract with Sigint

In the wake of the latest New York Times/Guardian UK/ProPublica triple team effort breaking news of America’s National Security Agency’s (NSA) anti-cryptography effort Sigint, a new level of social contract…

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