Biosecurity Fire and Climate Change

Scion’s research helps improve New Zealand’s ability to manage risks to our forests associated with biosecurity, fire and climate change. Our science has contributed to improved effectiveness of biosecurity systems in New Zealand, reduced impacts of pests and diseases and fire protection for rural landscapes.

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    Fighting back with science

    Kauri (Agathis australis) are the slow growing giants of our northern forests revered by all New Zealanders, particularly Maori.
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    Containing the spread of hitchhiking pests

    The past 50 or so years has seen a dramatic change in the volume, and mode, of international trade. Not only has the volume escalated substantially, but around 90% of it is carried by sea, mostly in containers.
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    Urgent need for global strategies on forest health

    Keeping invasive pests out of forests should be a top priority for all countries according to Scion Principal Scientist, Dr Eckehard (Ecki) Brockerhoff.
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    Improving community resilience to wildfire

    The recent spate of wild fires in the South Island is evidence that the current fire season is one of the worst in recent years.
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    Building community awareness of fire risks

    Scion’s Rural Fire Research Team has been running hot this past year with the fire research programme again receiving Gold status in the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s (MBIE) annual reporting round, one of only 18 awards over 250 contracts.
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    Soil bacteria may promote tree growth and mitigate climate change

    Research into how a group of growth promoting bacteria help plants cope with environmental stress may have major implications for scientists worldwide trying to piece together the full picture of global warming.
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    Keeping our forests safe

    Highlights from our 2013 annual report: reducing the risk to New Zealand’s forests from new pests; collaborative efforts to protect New Zealand’s borders; and new technologies to reduce risk to our forests and rural environment to fire, wind and extreme climate change.
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    Microscopic monsters take on the mighty forest giants

    The graceful, iconic kauri, Agathis australis, comfortably placed in the top echelon of the world’s mightiest trees, is at risk of being toppled by a microscopic monster.
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    Climate change impacts on forest productivity and health

    Forest growers need to know how climate change can affect the productivity and health of their trees. Accounting for the effects of climate change involves careful consideration of how both direct effects, such as carbon dioxide (CO2) and temperature, and indirect risk factors, such as fire and disease, influence plantation productivity.
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    Fighting rural fires with smartphones

    Whenever a fire breaks out, people reach for their phones. Thanks to a smartphone app developed by Scion’s rural fire research team, phones can be used for more than just ringing 111. Fire managers can use their phone to help fight the fire.
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    Kicking the weedy nuisance

    If you want to plant a forest in New Zealand, you have to control the weeds. The challenge is that environmental certification standards are restricting weed control options for forest growers. This dilemma means that weed control must be treated not as a nuisance, but as a science.
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