Australasian Science: Australia's authority on science since 1938

Expert Opinion

Experts pick apart the veracity of claims made in research papers and the media.

National Science Statement Released

By AusSMC

The Australian government has set out a plan to use science to engage and enrich Australian society. Its objectives are to engage all Australians with science, building scientific skills, produce new research and technology, and improve Australians’ lives through research.

The full text of this article can be purchased from Informit.

On Blackouts and Renewable Energy

By AusSMC

Politicians have blamed South Australia’s recent blackout on its reliance on renewable energy. Is this a valid concern for the state’s energy security?

The full text of this article can be purchased from Informit.

Climate Change Authority Report “Untrue and Dangerous”

By AusSMC

The Climate Change Authority has called for the introduction of an emissions trading scheme, but two members of its board, David Karoly and Clive Hamilton, have since issued a dissenting minority report calling for stronger measures to reduce emissions.

The full text of this article can be purchased from Informit.

Who to Kill? An Ethical Dilemma for Driverless Cars

By AusSMC

A study published in Science has found that people generally approve of autonomous cars that have been programmed to sacrifice their passengers if it will save others, yet these same people aren’t keen to ride in such “utilitarian” vehicles themselves.

The full text of this article can be purchased from Informit.

Who to kill? The dilemma of driverless cars

By AusSMC

Driverless cars hold the promise of safer transport. But how should they react when loss of life appears inevitable? Should a car swerve to miss a pedestrian on the road, even if doing so would kill the passenger?

The full text of this article can be purchased from Informit.

Nanotech Cleared in Food Additives and Packaging

By AusSMC

Food Standards Australia New Zealand has released two reports reviewing the evidence for the safety of nanotechnologies in food packaging and in food additives. Based on patent searches rather than on nanotech declarations to the regulator, the reports suggest there is no direct evidence that novel nanomaterials are currently being used in food packaging applications in Australia or New Zealand.

The full text of this article can be purchased from Informit.

Very Hot Drinks Are a Likely Cancer Risk

The World Health Organization has found that drinking very hot drinks is a likely cancer risk but there is no evidence of a link between coffee and cancer.

The full text of this article can be purchased from Informit.

Federal Budget 2016

By AusSMC

The Federal Budget announced an additional $100 million for geographical modelling of mineral, petroleum and groundwater resources, and $200 million over 10 years for Antarctic research. However, there were no direct budget measures relating to CSIRO.

The full text of this article can be purchased from Informit.

Second Genetically Modified Human Embryos Created

By AusSMC

A second case of gene editing of human embryos has attempted to introduce resistance to HIV infection, but only four of the 26 embryos were modified successfully.

The full text of this article can be purchased from Informit.

Wi-Fi Fears Disputed

By AusSMC

The ABC’s science program Catalyst drew widespread criticism after giving precedence to the views of US cancer epidemiologist Dr Devra Davis in an episode that examined “whether our wireless devices could be putting our health at risk”.

The full text of this article can be purchased from Informit.