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National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research

NIWA, the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research, is a Crown Research Institute established in 1992. It operates as a stand-alone company with its own Board of Directors and Executive.

NIWA’S purpose is to enhance the economic value and sustainable management of New Zealand’s aquatic resources and environments, to provide understanding of climate and the atmosphere and increase resilience to weather and climate hazards to improve safety and wellbeing of New Zealanders.


Displaying 1 - 20 of 29 articles

A expectativa de vida longa e baixa taxa de reprodução torna os tubarões e arraias de águas profundas tão vulneráveis à exploração excessiva quanto as baleias. Shutterstock/Greg Amptman

Capturados por sua carne e óleo de fígado, tubarões e arraias das profundezas agora enfrentam risco de extinção

A longa expectativa de vida e baixa taxa de reprodução tornam os tubarões e as arraias de águas profundas tão vulneráveis à exploração excessiva quanto as baleias
Freshly exposed bedrock at the terminus of Brewster Glacier in March 2023. Andrew Lorrey

Frozen in time: old paintings and new photographs reveal some NZ glaciers may soon be extinct

An estimated 13 trillion litres of ice has already been lost from glaciers in New Zealand’s Southern Alps since 1978. Several are now approaching extinction.
@DLorrey, NIWA

The Zealandia Switch drove rapid global ice retreat 18,000 years ago. Has it switched to a new level?

Rocks deposited by vanishing glaciers in the Southern Alps thousands of years ago hold climate clues about the past, painting a bleak picture about the long-term survival of alpine ice in New Zealand.
The project’s drill rig on the slopes of the Kamb Ice Stream.

Exploring Antarctica’s hidden under-ice rivers and their role in future sea-level rise

Researchers have surveyed an Antarctic under-ice river for the first time directly, and their observations support the idea that such sub-glacial rivers form estuaries as they flow into the ocean.
Shutterstock/Adel Newman

The ocean is our greatest climate regulator. It must be a stronger part of climate policy and action

The ocean has been buffering us from the impacts of climate change, but it is reaching the limit of this capacity. Integrating ocean and climate policy will be crucial.

Power from the ocean: can we use bio-fouling organisms to help extract energy from waves?

Ocean waves are a massive source of energy, but it’s challenging to design power generators for the harsh environment. Allowing marine organisms to grow on engineered structures could help.
Shutterstock/Tracey McNamara

Why we should release New Zealand’s strangled rivers to lessen the impact of future floods

Given climate change predictions of more extreme floods in New Zealand, it’s time to change management practices to work with a river, allowing it room to move and its channels to adjust.
Une zone océanique tumultueuse où les vagues peuvent atteindre 20 mètres et plus… Shutterstock

L’océan Austral : une richesse écologique hors du commun et un rôle clé pour le climat

L’océan Austral constitue le principal réservoir de chaleur et de carbone de notre planète. Il abrite des formes de vie extraordinaires, des invertébrés microscopiques aux gigantesques baleines.
Shutterstock / CherylRamalho

Un océano singular: la riqueza ecológica del Antártico y su importancia para el clima global

El Océano Austral (Antártico) es el principal almacén de calor y carbono de nuestro planeta, y es hogar de extraordinarias formas de vida, desde pequeñas algas y criaturas sin espinas hasta pingüinos, focas y ballenas.

An ocean like no other: the Southern Ocean’s ecological richness and significance for global climate

The Southern (Antarctic) Ocean is our planet’s primary storage of heat and carbon, and it’s home to extraordinary life forms, from tiny algae and spineless creatures to penguins, seals and whales.

Storm warning: a new long-range tropical cyclone outlook is set to reduce disaster risk for Pacific Island communities

Tropical cyclones account for almost four in five natural disasters across Pacific Island nations. But a new forecasting tool now gives up to four months warning for the upcoming cyclone season.
Andrew Lorrey

Why long-term environmental observations are crucial for New Zealand’s water security challenges

Auckland’s extreme drought and the rapid retreat of glaciers in the Southern Alps both highlight how important long-term observations are for water management policy and planning.


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