NZ Geomechanics News


A state of constant change

As Christmas approaches we look back on a year of changes, and can no doubt look forward to many more!

Key changes affecting NZGS this year have included a new Committee and Chair, a change in the Editors, loss of some influential figures in our profession and more lockdowns with their associated dramas and impacts on how businesses are run and how we work. But look back through time – it’s all happened before in some guise or other. Change is constant.

The important thing to do with changes and crises is to assess them carefully and decide what we have learned. In this issue we have an article that looks at the lessons learned from NCTIR in the recovery phase following the Kaikōura Earthquake. Similar lessons were learned at SCIRT and in the Port Hills following the Canterbury Earthquakes, and those were carried forward to kick-start the Kaikoura response. In turn the lessons from Kaikōura will help with the Alpine Fault response when it’s needed. And that is another change – GNS and VUW have (again) reduced the recurrence interval for the Alpine Fault from about 300 years to ~260 years based on new knowledge. And they have increased to likelihood of “the big one” to 75% in the next 50 years. Some of us ARE going to experience it, and use the lessons from the past to help kick-start the response. But the specific event effects and priorities will be different, so more lessons will be learned.

Every job you ever work on will teach you something. Some lessons will be good, some not. But learn ALL of those lessons; they will all help you!

My old granny was born when people travelled by horse and cart. She saw the advent of motor cars, aeroplanes, radio, television and men on the moon. She saw the changes that accompanied all of those events but she could not have imagined the changes that have occurred since those times. Similarly, you and I can only speculate on the changes that will come in future. Some of you will see more changes than others – you will have to deal with climate change, sea level rise, over-population of the planet, future pandemics, and who knows what else. And all the while you will be living ‘normal’ lives…

It has been a great pleasure to work with the team to bring you NZ Geomechanics News over the last few years. Now there is a new team, and already in this issue you will see changes (improvements) in layout. More changes will come as the new team develop their ideas. Because change is constant.

Enjoy change, learn from it and contribute to it where you can.

Don Macfarlane


Tags : #editorial

NZ Geomechanics News
Camilla Gibbons, Don Macfarlane
NZ Geomechanics News>Issue 102 - December 2021
New Zealand
Society News

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