Each weekday The Front Page keeps you up to date with the biggest news in New Zealand. Today it's a warning climate change threatens our security, a New Zealander who's been told coming home could kill her, bad news for farmers, and the truth about why myna birds are so annoying. Hosted by Frances Cook.
Climate change has been identified as one of the most significant security threats of our time.
A Defence report released today says climate change can spark low-level and violent conflict, and the Defence Force needs to be able to respond to multiple events at the same time.
Security risks include vulnerable populations losing their livelihoods, increased food and water scarcity, malnutrition, climate migration, health-related crises, competition for resources, land disputes and the potential for increased violence from mismanaged adaptation or migration.
The report notes climate change is already having adverse impacts.
Defence Minister Ron Mark says the links between climate change and conflict are indirect, but they are clear.
A number of recommendations were made in the report, including that NZ Defence should explore opportunities to support scientific research on climate change and security in the South Pacific.
Hot on the heels of this report, research shows our hottest summer on record drove the biggest seasonal melt ever recorded at the Southern Alps.
The research comes from veteran climate scientist Dr Jim Salinger, who gave a presentation to a meteorology conference in Christchurch today.
He says the Southern Alps are like a "canary in the coal mine", due to the sensitivity of its postcard glaciers to climate change.
The summer of 2017-18 broke an 84 year record for warmth, and had hit our glaciers particularly hard.
Salinger estimates the total ice loss was about 9 per cent of the alps' total ice volume, making it the greatest annual loss on record.
It turns out most in the agriculture sector wants to reduce its emissions to fight climate change – yet nearly half of farmers don't know how to go about it.
That's among the key findings from two years of research into the opportunities, costs and barriers of reducing biological emissions in New Zealand's primary industries.
The just-issued report says that if all farmers operated using today's best practice, New Zealand might be able to slash agriculture emissions by up to 10 per cent.
Continued funding for research into new, novel technologies would be important for reducing emissions further.
Nearly half of New Zealand's greenhouse gas emissions come from agriculture – the main source being methane burped from cattle and sheep.
A $9million reconciliation agreement has been settled for Parihaka.
The signing follows last year's Crown apology for the invasion of the Taranaki settlement in 1881.
Residents were forcibly evicted, raped, and unjustly imprisoned - their buildings desecrated, and land taken.
Maori Development Minister Nanaia Mahuta says it shaped the tone of the colonial settler Government's engagement with Māori.
For more on this story, tune in to Newstalk ZB
A New Zealand woman says she's trapped in Australia because Pharmac refuses to fund the treatment she needs to stay alive.
Rachel Paine was in her early 20s and living with a friend in Perth when she started getting dizzy spells. She couldn't get through a quarter of netball without feeling like she'd pass out.
After being hospitalised with a sharp pain in her stomach specialists eventually diagnosed an extremely rare blood and immune condition.
In simple terms, some of Paine's blood cells are missing a protein and her immune system is attacking them as a result.
That makes her anaemic, leaving her constantly tired, and at a higher risk of potentially fatal blood clots.
Australian doctors give her an IV transfusion of medication every two weeks, drastically cutting the risk of blood clots and complications.
However, it's not funded here, and costs about $600,000 for a year's treatment for one person.
Dr Collette Bromhead, chief executive of the NZ Organisation for Rare Disorders, says it's tough to get medicines funded for patients with rare disorders, and New Zealand is slipping further and further behind other countries for access to medicines.
The Government's facing international pressure to take a firmer stand on China, and against apparent criminal harassment of University of Canterbury professor Anne-Marie Brady.
Nearly 200 international experts have united in an open letter to say the episode has left them "alarmed and appalled".
The letter references extensive Herald reporting on the issue, notably a number of suspicious burglaries of Brady's home and campus office, and claims last month her car had been sabotaged, in response to her work exposing China's influence activities in New Zealand.
The letter says New Zealand authorities must protect Professor Brady, so that she can continue her work, as well as signalling to fellow researchers that democratic societies will protect them.
The 169 signatories include academics, former diplomats, and journalists for international news outlets, including Australian public intellectual Clive Hamilton, US Council on Foreign Relations fellow Elizabeth Economy , and Paris-based Jean-Philippe Beja, a researcher at the elite National Center for Scientific Research.
Prominent journalists who signed the letter include Jamil Anderlini, the Hong Kong-based Asia editor for the Financial Times, and Jonathan Mirsky, the former China correspondent for the Observer.
Bad news for farmers - Fonterra has slashed its milk price forecast, and confirmed its putting Tip Top up for sale.
Fonterra has cut its farmgate milk price forecast for 2018/19 to between $6 and $6.30 per kilo of milk solids.
The co-op's first-quarter revenue came to $3.8 billion, down 4 per cent.
Chairman John Monaghan says the revision in the milk price is due to the global milk supply outstripping demand, which has driven a downward trend on the GlobalDairyTrade (GDT) index since May.
The prediction for an abnormal El Nino weather pattern over summer could impact milk production.
In terms of the Tip Top sale, Monaghan says its performing well, but is their only ice cream business, and has reached maturity as an investment for them.
They say taking it to the next stage will require a level of investment that they're not willing to make.
It's been revealed a British backpacker missing in New Zealand, is the daughter of a millionaire property developer.
The father of Grace Millane is now en route to New Zealand in an effort to find his missing daughter as fears grow for her safety.
The 22-year-old arrived in the country two weeks ago, and hasn't spoken to family in a week.
When she didn't reply to birthday messages on Sunday, they launched a search on social media.
Her brother Michael says police have informed them of CCTV footage showing his sister returning to a hostel on Saturday night.
Millane was about six weeks into a year-long world trip. Before New Zealand she had spent four weeks travelling in South America.
During that time she had been in touch with her family daily through WhatsApp.
Rising numbers of meth and synthetic drug users could be behind increasing numbers of attacks on nurses.
Canterbury DHB chief executive David Meates is meeting WorkSafe today, and a second group of Hillmorton Hospital based nurses tomorrow, after recent attacks on nurses.
Nurses Organisation Christchurch organiser John Miller says drug use is increasing, and it raises questions.
He says people are coming into the Te Awakura unit affected by methamphetamine and other drugs.
For more on this story, tune in to Newstalk ZB
And St John Ambulance workers have also had enough.
More than a thousand of them are taking industrial action today over pay and conditions.
They'll swap their regular St John uniforms for mufti and orange high-vis vests that read, 'Shift Our Pay'.
FIRST Union spokesman Jared Abbott says they want to send a clear message to the organisation, and to the public, about the reality of low waged, 24/7 shift work.
For more on this story, tune in to Newstalk ZB
Survivor NZ host Matt Chisholm has taken to social media to reveal his struggles with mental health.
He shared a selfie of himself outside of a doctor's office in Auckland with the hashtag #itsokaytonotbeokay.
In the caption he said his head hurt, and he wasn't smiling much, but that he'd promised Greg Boyed he would see a doctor, so he took that first step.
TVNZ news presenter and journalist Greg Boyed had been battling depression and passed away in August this year.
Chisholm joins other Kiwi stars who have spoken out about mental health issues this year and been praised for opening up about a traditionally taboo subject.
The Project's Kanoa Lloyd took to Instagram in October to share her experience with attending counselling for her mental wellbeing.
If you've ever heard a raucous racket cut through the otherwise dulcet birdsong of a New Zealand backyard, there's a good chance the offender was a myna.
The noisy character is typically found hanging around North Island roadsides, and considered a pest because it feeds on fruit and causes damage to crops.
Annual surveys have shown how their populations are on the rise – to the point they today outnumber even our friendly fantail in urban gardens.
Now a just-published study shows New Zealand mynas actually sound worse than the native populations in Asia.
Dr Sam Hill, a former Massey University ecologist says it's down to the founder effect.
Birds introduced to new areas from their native ranges can suffe genetic bottlenecking, isolation and sometimes inbreeding, and in terms of vocal behaviour, more simple songs.
So while myna birds in areas such as Nepal may sing beautiful complex songs, here in New Zealand, we get a dull set-list of harsh screeches and shrieks.
That's the Front Page for today, Thursday December 6, making sure you're across the biggest news of the day. For more on these stories, check out The New Zealand Herald, or tune in to Newstalk ZB.