Risk Interpretation and Action Seminar Closes


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In 1992, somewhere in the region of 28,000 bright rubber ducks left China on sea containers bound for the United States. Shortly afterwards, during a storm in the North Pacific Ocean, close to the International Date Line, twelve 40-foot containers were washed overboard. The ducks were lost at sea.

To this day, the bright bath toys have washed up ashore in far flung destinations such as Hawaii, Alaska, Australia, South America, Scotland, Newfoundland, and the Pacific Northwest; others have been found frozen in Arctic ice.

A the time the ducks inadvertedly revolutionized our understanding of ocean currents, as well as for teaching us a thing or two about plastic pollution in the process.

The story is one that has been told and retold over the past seven days amongst our Fellows, and serves as an apt metaphor for what we hope to achieve.

21 early career scientists came to New Zealand for the chance to share and exchange expertise and knowledge. At its close, the seminar will send off our bright ducks to far flung shores, progressing through the turbulent currents of oceans and seas, taking with them that knowledge gained at this farthest edge of the Earth… and perhaps one day, the ducks will all be reunited once again.