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AuthorJames Churchill

Author Archive: James Churchill

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October 2, 2016

The UN made a pretty serious announcement the other day. They declared that antibiotic resistance is the “greatest and most urgent global risk.” Move aside climate change. Antibiotics are pretty amazing things. They were invented in the early 1900s and quickly revolutionized medicine. Antibiotics save millions of people from dying from bacterial infection. They work […]

September 18, 2016

New Zealand has long been proud of being clean and green. The image seems to have gotten into people’s minds and tourism continues to grow off the back of it. But most of us are aware that it’s not quite the reality. In 2012 John Key compared the 100% Pure slogan to that of McDonald’s, […]

September 4, 2016

Art has often been driven by science. In the mid-19th century the introduction of paint in tubes and increasingly portable easels allowed painters to work outdoors and experiment with natural light. The futurist movement in the early 20th century emphasised and glorified the dynamism of the modern technologies of the industrial city. The invention of […]

August 7, 2016

Nasa recently announced that last June was the 14th consecutive month of record breaking heat. Congrats team. Many scientists are saying that they have been caught off guard by the rapid and consistent rise in temperature that we have experienced in the last couple of years. Of course, politicians are still failing to act. The […]

May 29, 2016

Vaccination has a long and pretty successful history. The Chinese were doing a form of it in the 10th century. In the late 1800s it had become common practice in England. Vaccines led to massive drops in mortality from diphtheria, influenza, hepatitis A and B, measles, mumps, rubella, polio, tetanus, smallpox and more. The general […]

May 1, 2016

“I believe what makes us unique is transcending our limits. Gravity pins us to the ground but I just flew to America. I lost my voice but I can still speak thanks to my voice synthesiser, how do we transcend these limits? With our minds and our machines.” For someone who can’t talk, Stephen Hawking […]

April 10, 2016

On November 28 last year about 7000 Wellingtonians marched on parliament demanding action on climate change. Hundreds of thousands more marched across the world: in Beirut and Barcelona, in Mexico and Melbourne. The timing was designed to put pressure on heads of states and diplomats from across the globe who were attending the Paris Climate […]

April 10, 2016

I love bees. There’s something wonderful about the way they organise themselves. The queen bee is raised from a larvae that is fed protein rich royal jelly. A surviving queen flies out in search of a congregation of drone bees with whom she will mate, often for several days, so that she can spend the […]

March 20, 2016

I remember having to watch An Inconvenient Truth in high school. I remember listening to Al Gore talk about greenhouse gases, rising sea levels, and global warming. It was difficult to imagine back then, like when you read about war and try to picture what it would really would have been like. Such things are […]