Earth Observatory Blog

Submitted on 30 Nov 2017 by:

Sedimentation expert Adam Switzer says his years as a professional surfer has shaped much of his research and work.

As a child, Associate Professor Adam Switzer was always on the lookout for the next big wave. At the age of 17, he became a professional surfer.

Juggling between his books and his surfboard, the Australian spent a large part of his next nine years being tossed about by crests and swells, before calling it quits because of a bad shoulder injury.

With the heady days of riding waves behind him, Assoc Prof Switzer decided to study them instead, focusing his research on tsunamis and storms.

“The physical cumulative stress of surfing was something that pushed me to go and get a ‘real’ job,” said Assoc Prof Switzer.  “My surfing career did...

Submitted on 16 Nov 2017 by:

 

Singaporeans dread the dangerous haze incidents that occur each year. Thick, smoky air dries our throats and irritates our eyes. It makes breathing difficult and can cause lasting damage to our lungs.

During each haze period, atmospheric chemist Mikinori Kuwata and his team of six get down to work. They measure the chemical composition of air particles at the Nanyang Technological University (NTU) campus, located in the west of Singapore and thus close to the source of the haze in Sumatra, Indonesia.

Assistant Professor Kuwata and his team cannot prevent transboundary haze, but they are on a mission to provide scientific findings that will help the region combat it. 

“The job of an atmospheric chemist is to understand the atmosphere. The haze...

Submitted on 10 Nov 2017 by:

Call her a nerd, but earthquake scientist Judith Hubbard loves geology, and she is not afraid to admit it.

Geology is all around us, evident to those who care to look, like structural geologist and self-proclaimed nerd, Judith Hubbard.

As a Principal Investigator at the Earth Observatory of Singapore (EOS), the tectonics researcher has covered almost every surface of her office with work.

Both sides of her office door are plastered, top to bottom, with expedition photos, while graphs and metre-long topographical maps of Nepal and Singapore stretch across her walls. A slew of geology books and stacks of paper threaten to engulf her entire desk.

“Well, they say an empty desk is a sign of an empty mind,” says the 33-year-old, who is also an Assistant...

Submitted on 30 Aug 2017 by:

The Singapore Eco Film Festival (SGEFF) is back for its second year, featuring 21 films from 14 countries. SGEFF is a space for people from the public, private, and creative sectors to come together to learn about pressing environmental challenges, and to share positive solutions to these issues. 

The hosts of FirstLook Asia, a daily Channel NewsAsia Programme, sat down with SGEFF Executive Director Jacqui Hocking to find out more about what to expect from SGEFF. Joining them was Professor Isaac Kerlow, an award-winning filmmaker and Principal Investigator at the Earth Observatory of Singapore.

Prof Kerlow spoke about the process of making his new film, 'Orang Rimba,' which traces the impacts of forest development on a group of...

Submitted on 28 Aug 2017 by:

From August 6 - 11, Singapore hosted the 14th Annual Meeting of the Asia Oceania Geosciences Society (AOGS). The meeting was an opportunity for academics, researchers, and students to come together to discuss their work, exchange ideas, and catch up with colleagues and old friends.

Researchers at the Earth Observatory of Singapore (EOS) and the Asian School of the Environment (ASE) were very busy during AOGS, presenting a total of 38 posters, 38 oral presentations, and several special lectures and workshops.

Mr Yudha Setiawan Djamil, a PhD student from EOS, said he that we was pleased to present his research on haze transport during Singapore’s National Day, on August 9th. “If developed further,” he said, “this work could improve the potential for...

Submitted on 21 Aug 2017 by:

The one-north Festival is an annual celebration of research, innovation, creativity, and enterprise. This event includes talks, exhibitions, workshops, and tours. As part of our outreach efforts, the Earth Observatory of Singapore (EOS) took part in this year’s one-north Festival.

Professor Kerry Sieh, the director of EOS, gave a public lecture titled ‘The Sustainability of Singapore and Its Neighbours in the Face of Earthquakes, Tsunamis, Volcanoes and a Changing Climate.’ In this presentation, Prof Sieh discussed the relevance of geohazard science for Southeast Asia and, specifically for Singapore. 

Prof Sieh began by asking the audience to consider the need for research. “Why do research?” he asked the audience of primarily secondary school students and...

Submitted on 16 Aug 2017 by:

In 2013 and 2015, Singapore suffered from extreme haze. Channel NewsAsia sat down with two experts to find out more about Singapore's haze prospects for 2017.

Assistant Professor Mikinori Kuwata, a Principal Investigator at the Earth Observatory of Singapore, discussed Singapore's haze situation with Vivian Claire Liew, the CEO of the social enterprise PhilanthropyWorks. Asst. Prof Kuwata explained how a combination of factors - both human and natural - will influence the prevalence of haze in Singapore.

Available online from August 14 2017 at 10pm, the video commentary can be viewed here.

Submitted on 04 Aug 2017 by:

A recent BBC report announced that South Asia could be uninhabitable by 2100 due to global warming. Singapore Tonight, a nightly Channel NewsAsia programme, investigated the potential ramifications of this extreme global warming for Singapore.

The hosts of Singapore Tonight spoke to Assistant Professor Wang Xianfeng, a Principal Investigator at the Earth Observatory of Singapore, about the weather that Singapore can expect in the future, due to climate change. 

Aired on 3 August 2017 at 10pm on Channel NewsAsia, the episode can be viewed here....

Submitted on 03 Aug 2017 by:

Most people would agree that Singapore is quite clean compared to other countries in the region. The government has focused on the ‘Keep Singapore Clean’ movement since 1968. The movement is active even until today, to encourage the public to keep Singapore clean.

In 1990, the concepts of ‘clean’ and ‘green’ were brought together for a Clean and Green Week campaign. This campaign has been a yearly affair ever since, and has evolved into the present Clean and Green Singapore campaign initiated by the National Environment Agency, and centred on...

Submitted on 19 May 2017 by:

Talking Point, a current affairs TV programme, takes a closer look at the dangers of Singapore’s coastal conditions after the tragic drowning of a 12-year-old boy at East Coast Park.

Speaking to Associate Professor Adam Switzer, a Principal Investigator at the Earth Observatory of Singapore, the programme delved into how safe it really is to swim at our beaches, as well as where the most hazardous waters for swimmers are.

Aired on 18 May 2017 at 9.30pm on MediaCorp’s Channel 5, the episode can be viewed here.

 

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