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17 mile regulator - a computer controlled flume gate - on the East Goulburn Main Channel Water. ©Rubicon Water

As El Niño bites, it’s time to take stock of our water

With El Niño upon us and the prospect of water scarcity ahead, how well positioned are we to make accurate and timely decisions about water resources?
Despite the noble intentions behind charity wells, they may not be the best thing. Franco Volpato/Shutterstock

Africa’s aquifers aren’t being protected as they should

The digging of wells in Africa has often been thought of as the solution to helping rural women walking to get water, but they may cause more harm than good.
Photosynthesis is crucial to the ability of plants to convert sunlight into energy. N i c o l a/Flickr

PM’s Prize for Science for revealing nature’s solar power

Distinguished Professor Graham Farquhar has received this year's Prime Minister's Prize for Science for his pioneering research into photosynthesis.
Unlike science fiction films featuring grotesque aliens and faraway galaxies, Ridley Scott’s The Martian depicts a sci-fi space mission that could soon be science fact. 20th Century Fox

How close are we to actually becoming Martians?

NASA has set a target date of 2030 for a manned mission to Mars. With no real scientific breakthroughs needed, success depends on developing the proper technology.
This digital false-colour image shows the dark, narrow streaks on Martian slopes inferred to be formed by seasonal flow of water on the planet. The streaks are roughly the length of a football field. Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Univ. of Arizona

There is water on Mars, but what does this mean for life?

Now that we have discovered liquid water on the surface of Mars, what does this mean for the prospects of finding life there, past or present?
Improving maternal mortality and ending preventable deaths in children are some of the health targets in the Sustainable Development Goals. Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade/Flickr

More is less? Health in the Sustainable Development Goals

Health has secured its place as one of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals. But without clear mechanisms to report, finance or engage other sectors, could more end up as less?
The Sahel, the transition zone between the arid north of Africa and tropic south, has highly variable rainfall. Center for International Forestry Research.

Native shrubs: a simple fix for drought-stricken crops in Sub-Saharan Africa

Field trials in Senegal show native shrubs can access deep-soil water and make it available to adjacent crops – a technique that could alleviate drought conditions in marginal lands around the world.

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