Climate Change scientists no longer wanted by AgResearch

The Crown research institute has confirmed it will cut the jobs of of 33 scientists and 50 technicians during the next year, as part of a restructuring to cope with a $5 million cut in funding.

Their research in greenhouse gases, animal and forage sciences and on-farm tech support is being scaled back, while 27 new roles are being introduced in food security, Maori agri-business, high value foods and innovative food products.

AgResearch chair Sam Robinson said the changes were in response to a changing demand.

“These areas are reducing because the sector doesn’t see the need for them, as agriculture and the need for science that supports agriculture changes … through time,” he said. “There are areas we are increasing our effort in science in response to the sector’s needs.”

But Federated Farmers president William Rolleston said the agriculture industry was in need of climate research, and that should not be sacrificed.

“We want to see a science sector that’s increasing its output not decreasing it, not necessarily picking particular subjects in a vacuum of information. It’s about the overall picture,” he said. “We know the government wants to diversify the economy, and we actually support that, but we don’t want that to be done at the expense of agriculture.”

Amusingly, the jobs that are being canned are the ones that look into animals farting, and what pasture is better for the environment. ?It is a remarkable turn-around by a Government that still hasn’t, officially at least, given up on trying to battle climate change.

Burgeoning scientific careers at the Climate Change trough are coming to a sudden end, the wailing can be heard over the cows.

“The problem with these Crown research institutes is that they’re being told they need to get funding from industry, and so about 50 percent of their funding comes from industry, but industry likes short-term projects.” she said.

“Some of the comments being made around AgResearch are that, if you aren’t in areas that will bring you a quick buck, you know, a big reward quite quickly, they’re not interested.”

Yeah. ?How horrible. ? I’d love it too if someone would keep paying me to do the same non-productive work for a few decades without any measurable value for the taxpayer money spent.

Science that doesn’t deliver a dollar isn’t science that the taxpayer wants to pay for. ?And funnily, neither does private industry.

I wouldn’t mind if there was a fund for ‘soft science’ that they can compete for. ?I appreciate the fact some science that isn’t immediately profitable is still important. ?But at least that way it is clearly indicated, segregated, and projects can compete against each other for the allocated funds, rather than dilute taxpayers’ investment in Crown Research due to tangential projects getting too many resources.