NZ SeaRise Programme

Photo by Bill Fairs via Unsplash

Science Communicator

I advised the NZ SeaRise programme on media and public communications around the launch of sea-level rise projections for Aotearoa that are location specific.

The co-ordinated management of comms, outreach and engagement has been fantastic and better than anything I can remember from a NZ science discovery point of view. Beyond expectations!

Tim Naish – NZ SeaRise Programme Co-Leader

The NZ SeaRise programme provides sea rise projections for every 2km of the coast. These projections consider recent data from the IPCC and localised vertical land movement. This work is now being extended by the Te Ao Hurihuri: Te Ao Hou, Our Changing Coast Programme.

Vertical land movement is important to sea-level rise, as subsidence accelerates sea-level rise and brings forward its impact (e.g. it makes storms and floods more frequent). Uplift has the opposite influence. This is the first project to look at vertical land movement alongside sea-level rise. It found that sea-level rise is happening twice as fast in some locations in Aotearoa because we live on ‘shaky isles’.

Some of the work on this project can be seen at:

The online mapping tool itself at

Extensive coverage from Stuff in their interactive: Sinking Cities and NZ Geographic in their infographic heavy: A Map of the Future. Newshub also covered the story extensively (see below for the first item).

And other videos at

My work included:

  • Preparing a communications strategy / plan
  • Preparing a media plan
  • Briefing illustrator and helping PhD student work with illustrator
  • Developing a case study template
  • Revamping and rewriting website structure and copy to encompass technical website
  • Ensuring technical website was understandable for general public as well as specialised stakeholders
  • Completing an in depth media plan and working with the Science Media Centre to promote the project
  • Contributing to writing stories for different locations as required
  • Writing and/or editing material for press releases, website, and other public fora
  • Ongoing liaison with and advice to NZ SeaRise programme researchers