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Warm water and air conditions have contributed to an increase in jellyfish around New Zealand.

Throughout New Zealand people have been reporting more jellyfish than usual. Experts have blamed the high temperatures.

The outbreak has been particularly bad in the Auckland region.

Warm water has attracted the jellyfish towards the shore, causing some swimmers to break out in a rash known as ‘sea bather’s eruption.’

Some of the jellyfish were microscopic and could get caught in togs. After that swimmers get out of the sea, water drains from the swimwear and traps the jellyfish between the fabric and the skin, causing the stinging cells to release their toxin.

Children and people with allergies have been asked to be careful when at beaches.

Work is set to start at Dunedin’s new hospital.

It was announced yesterday that demolition work will begin next month on one of the two central Dunedin blocks that will form the city’s new hospital.

The main area of the new hospital will be placed on the site of the old Cadbury building.

The government hoped to complete that building by 2028.

The smaller outpatient and day surgery building, to be built on a block north, is meant to be operational by November 2023.

The new hospital would cost well over $1 billion and require hundreds of workers to build.

An international agreement has been reached to protect the endangered Toroa/Antipodean albatross has been found.

One hundred and thirty countries have now agreed to protect the bird at a conference held in India. This was largely due to the collaborative efforts of New Zealand, Australia and Chile.

Conservation Minister Eugenie Sage said the agreement would help reduce Antipodean albatross from being inadvertently caught by fishing vessels. This happens often during the 100,000-kilometre annual migration the birds make.

There are now only 9050 breeding pairs, which mean the species could be extinct within the next 20 years.

Sage said today’s agreement showed increasing international consensus on the need to save seabirds from extinction.

Jennifer Ward-Lealand Te Atamira has won the 2020 New Zealander of the Year Award.

The actor and director was recognised for her dedication to the performing arts.

Ward-Lealand is already an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit as well as a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit.

Ward-Lealand, who was gifted the name Te Atamira by Sir Tīmoti Kāretu and this known for her campaigning for te reo Māori.

Ward-Lealand won ahead of other finalists Peter Beck, chief executive of RocketLab, and Professor Jane Harding from the Liggins Institute at the University of Auckland.

Among the other award winners were:

– Georgia Hale, Young New Zealander of the Year

– Nick Loosely, Local Hero of the Year

– Dame Margaret Sparrow, Senior New Zealander of the Year

Legendary singer, Sir Elton John, had to finish his Sunday concert early due to walking pneumonia.

The illness has also meant he has to postpone his Tuesday and Thursday concerts until next year.

Elton John says he’s “incredibly disappointed” to have to reschedule.

Late on Tuesday evening, a statement from his promoter was released. It said that Sir Elton John’s two remaining Mt Smart Stadium, Auckland, performances will be rescheduled to Friday 15th and Saturday 16th January 2021.

Walking pneumonia is an informal term for pneumonia that isn’t severe enough to require bed rest or hospitalisation. You may feel like you have a cold.

We hope Sir Elton has a speedy recovery.

New Zealand Post has temporarily suspended all mail to and from China due to the coronavirus outbreak.

This is due to NZ Post’s airline partners suspending flights into China.

“Given the current suspension of many airline services into China, NZ Post is currently not accepting any mail or parcels for delivery into China,” NZ post said on its website.

The suspension took effect on 17th February.

So, if you are waiting of a parcel from China you should expect ‘significant’ delays.

New Zealand Post said the service suspension will be reviewed regularly and once China is able to receive mail and parcels, it will recommence sending items.

The Holden car brand is being ‘retired’ in New Zealand and Australia.

The move was announced yesterday by General Motors, the owner of Holden. They will no longer be manufacturing right-hand-drive cars.

For decades Holden has been an iconic car in New Zealand. The company has been making and selling cars such as the Commodore, Astra, and Barina. The New Zealand Police force drive Holden’s and will now be forced to look for a different brand.

The move will come into effect in 2021.

In a statement, General Motors said the brand was no longer competitive in the current market.

The statement did not clarify how many jobs would be lost.

A groundbreaking ‘Green School’ has opened its doors in Taranaki.

Green School New Zealand has a focus on sustainability.

The school is housed in three alien-looking pods or ‘waka’ on farmland southwest of New Plymouth. The pods are built out of sustainable New Zealand pine and heat-treated in the UK they are designed to be thermally neutral and to blend into the environment.

Based on Green School Bali, the goal of the school – which had about 50 students enrolled – was to prepare young people for the 21st century.

Students will look at the United Nation’s sustainable development goal, permaculture, and principles of sustainability.

Green School New Zealand is a private school. Enrolment and tuition fees costing up to $40,000 for some overseas students.

The number of children attending New Zealand schools is falling.

The new information was released today by the Associate Minister for Education, Tracey Martin.

The data shows 58 percent cent of students in New Zealand regularly go to school. This is down from 64 percent in 2018.

The bad news is that numbers have been declining since 2015.

Some of the absences can be put down to legitimate illness. However, the data also showed a jump in absences on Mondays, Fridays and the last day of term.

The largest declines were among primary school and Māori and Pacific students.

“Every day at school matters and parents and schools need to take the issue seriously,” Martin said.

New Zealand has celebrated Safer Internet Day 2020.

The day is held annually around the world on the 11th of February and is designed to encouraging and promoting a better online experience.

More than 50 nations, tens of thousands of companies and millions of people are joining together for a better internet.

In New Zealand, online safety organisation Netsafe is again the official host.

They have held information sessions and produced resources to promote safer use of the Internet.

Netsafe started coordinating Safer Internet Day back in 2014. This year, the largest number of partners since then have pledged to support the event.

Netsafe CEO Martin Cocker says he is overwhelmed with the level of support Safer Internet Day was receiving, and that was growing daily. He says online safety is often considered an issue specific to young people.