The Australian Science Media Centre (AusSMC) is an independent, not-for-profit service for the news media, giving journalists direct access to evidence-based science and expertise.

We aim to better inform public debate on the major issues of the day by improving links between the media and the scientific community.

NEWS BRIEFING: Climate impacts, adaptation and vulnerability – release of the IPCC Working Group 2 Summary for Policymakers

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BRIEFING – TODAY 31 March 2014 at 12noon AEDT Online

Today the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) will release its summary for policymakers on the contribution of the Working Group II to its Fifth Assessment Report. The report will cover “impacts, adaptation and vulnerability” including food security, economics, oceans and more. Join us as three experts from CSIRO, all contributing authors, take us through the latest findings. read more

NEWS BRIEFING: People power – do it yourself climate modelling – Launch of Weather@Home Australia and New Zealand

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NEWS BRIEFING – Wednesday 26 March at 10:00 AEDT Online

Any Australian and New Zealander with a home computer and an internet connection will soon be able to power up their own climate model. The work will help scientists find the causes of the record high temperatures that hit Australia and New Zealand in 2013. read more

RAPID REACTION: Scientists detect echoes of the Big Bang – experts respond

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Astronomers say that they have found long-awaited evidence for the theory that the Universe underwent a period of rapid inflation in the very first moments of its existence. If confirmed, the tell-tale signature of gravitational waves in the afterglow of the Big Bang will open a new chapter in astronomy, cosmology and physics. The discovery, announced today at a press conference at Harvard-Smithsonian Centre for Astrophysics, also confirms a deep connection between quantum mechanics and general relativity. read more

ROUND-UP: The impact of electronic media on kids (JAMA Pediatrics) – experts respond

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EMBARGO LIFTED 07:00 AEDT Tue 18 Mar, 2014

TV, computers and video games bad for kids (JAMA Pediatrics*) & Media monitoring mums keep kids from piling on the pounds, but dads are a pushover (JAMA Pediatrics**) – experts respond

Two studies in JAMA Pediatrics look at the impact of electronic media on kids. read more

NEWS BRIEFING: Why is there more ice in Antarctica? – Launch of Antarctic sea ice report

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NEWS BRIEFING – TODAY 11 March 2014 at 10am AEDT Online 

If the world is warming, as scientist continue to tell us, how can reports of increased Antarctic sea ice make any sense at all? Shouldn’t it be melting just like the Arctic? Today the Antarctic Climate & Ecosystems Cooperative Research Centre (ACE CRC) will launch their Position Analysis: Antarctic Sea Ice and Climate Change 2014 to highlight where the research currently stands and to help sort out the confusion. read more

NEWS BRIEFING: Diabetes a stroke risk for women (The Lancet*)

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NEWS BRIEFING – Thu 6 Mar at 09:30 AEDT

A review of more than 64 studies has shown that women with diabetes have a 27 per cent higher risk of stroke than men with diabetes. Research has previously shown that diabetes confers a greater risk of having a heart attack in women than men and now this research shows the gender difference also extends to stroke.

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ROUND-UP: State of the Climate 2014 – experts respond

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EMBARGO LIFTED at 00.01 AEDT Tuesday 4 March, 2014

CSIRO and the Bureau of Meteorology have released their latest “State of the Climate” report on observed changes in long term trends in Australia’s climate. The report, which is released once every two years,  looks at trends in temperature, rainfall, heatwaves and fire weather, ice and snow, oceans and greenhouse gases and also examines future climate scenarios for Australia. Below Australian experts respond. read more

RAPID REACTION: Hazelwood coal fire health impacts – experts respond

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Emergency officials are advising vulnerable people in Morwell South to leave their homes amid growing concern about the health effects of smoke and ash from a fire burning at the Hazelwood coal mine. Below Australian experts comment on the health impacts of coal fires. read more

RAPID REACTION: Health impacts of wind farms – experts respond

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The National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) has released its draft Information Paper: Evidence onWind Farms and Human Health. The Information Paper, developed under the guidance of the NHMRC Wind Farms and Human Health Reference Group, provides a summary of the evidence of the possible impacts of wind farms on human health. The draft Information Paper is based on an independent systematic review of the scientific literature examining noise, shadow flicker and electromagnetic radiation. This work builds on NHMRC’s previous work on wind farms and honours the 2011 Senate Inquiry : Social and Economic Impact of Rural Wind Farms recommendation that NHMRC continue to review research with regular publication. Below Australian experts respond to the review. read more