Christchurch's answer to Hyde Park Corner - come along and hear an interesting and totally diverse range of speakers on the topics of our day. Come to one, come to them all, or get in touch and take to the stage yourself!

13 Feb   Are we Too Late to Save Antarctica? with Professor Paul Broady

Antarctica has long been regarded as a continent of little change perpetually locked in ice and with a small human presence.  However, change in some coastal regions and off-shore islands is now accelerating.  A warming climate is affecting life in lakes and on ice-free land.  Introduced plants and insects are encountered more frequently and at a wider range of locations.  Some might be naturally dispersed from the north whilst others are transported south by increasing numbers of scientific personnel and tourists.  Construction of new research stations and associated land-based airstrips greatly impact areas that were once wilderness.  To protect the natural values of Antarctica we will have to get serious in our actions to combat climate change and also limit our physical presence in the region.

20 Feb   Why disability representation in politics matters for all of us with Mojo Mathers

Mojo Mathers made history as NZ’s first deaf Member of Parliament. She has a bill being considered by select committee that aims to improve political representation for deaf and disabled people. Mojo will talk about growing up deaf, her journey into politics and why representation matters. Please note there will be NZSL Interpreters for this talk.

6 Mar     Sea Week Special:  Defend, Conserve, Protect with Sea Shepherd NZ

Sea Shepherd New Zealand is a non-profit conservation organisation whose mission is to end the destruction of habitat and slaughter of wildlife in the world’s oceans in order to conserve and protect ecosystems and species. Learn about the issues we face in NZ waters and the campaigns Sea Shepherd are running including: Operation Pahu to protect our precious Hector's Dolphin and the Marine Debris Campaign. Find out how you can be part of this powerful if sometimes piratical force for good.

3 Apr      Water, Water Everywhere and Not a Drop to Drink: threats to our most precious resource with Professor Bob Bower

In New Zealand, freshwater environments support our way of life and sustain our extensive primary industries, tourism and the health and well-being of people and communities (MFE, 2017).  Fresh water is a taonga and is at the core of the cultural identity of the tangata whenua.  But it’s under threat: from pollution, from industries like water bottling, from overuse. This talk will explore the challenges and possible ways forward in this vital and ongoing debate.