I received some rather distressing news the other day. It appears that due to budget cuts the South African Weather Service (SAWS) will no longer be recording coastal seawater temperatures. While seemingly esoteric, this is a real concern for climate change scientists in this country as SAWS produces the currently longest running time series for the country and as we all know, the longer a time series the better. So I’ve largely spent the last few days of my working hours on preparing meta-data, analyses and figures on the SAWS data to better understand how and to what degree we will need to act in order to ensure some continuation of these time series. We are making a plan and it looks like we will be able to largely salvage the situation. But more on that as it progresses.
In more positive news, it looks like we are going to be getting a cordless underwater drill! This is terribly exciting as it means we will no longer have to deploy UTRs via the railway bar method. Something I’ve always detested. This will allow us to improve our field methods drastically and increase our potential range of monitoring. Not just for us but potentially for the whole country.
My prolonged absence from this blog has not meant that I’ve been absent from my studies as well. Barring the usual holiday break for the second half of December I’ve been hard at work on two main projects specifically. The first has been the wrapping up of the statistics paper. That has since been submitted to the Journal of Climate and is awaiting the outcome of the review process. Once that was out the door I quickly put a rough draft together for the marine heatwave (MHW) collaboration with Thomas Wernberg, Eric Oliver and naturally Albertus Smit. A couple of additional steps have been suggested for the methodology, which must be complete before the results will be complete and the discussion will be able to attain a higher level of impact. This will all hopefully be done within the next few weeks and I’ll be on to a new project by the end of February. I need to pick up the pace if I am to catch up for the time lost on that monstrous statistics paper.
The bathymetry project is still in the works and will likely be the next project after the MHW one. There are several papers expected to be wrung from the MHW idea and perhaps they will be useful to put an honours student or masters student or two to work on, too.