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EXPERTS TAKE THE HOT SEAT

Posted 23 February 2006

EXPERTS from Harper Adams University College have been taking their places in the hot seat as part of a national scheme on climate change.
Questions were fired at Dr Peter Kettlewell and Dr Paul Beckwith on Wednesday (8) on aspects of the changing climate and the impact it has on the earth.
And the university lecturers used the state-of-the-art audio-visual equipment at the university for the first time.
The live video conference, organised by the West Midlands Regional Broadband Consortium (WMnet), focussed on the 'Implications for food production and the countryside’.
During the conference, the pair answered questions pitched by six 17 and 18-years-old at Pershore High School, Worcestershire.
They talked about the likely impact of climate change on the kinds of crops that can be grown, the effects on agriculture and anticipated consequences for the countryside.
Dr Kettlewell, who specialises in the influence of weather on crop production, said: “I thought it was a relevant exercise and the students had obviously thought about the questions they were going to ask.
“The important aspect of this exercise is that anyone, anywhere can log onto the system and join in the event.”
Dr Beckwith, a specialist in soil science with an interest in the ways in which land use can reduce the impact of global warming added: “This was an interesting way of trying to get the message across about the importance of global warming because it is an incredibly topical subject.”
The recorded event, which is aimed at helping learners in Key Stages 4 and 5, was chaired by Steve Horsfield, co-ordinator for WMnet, and will be edited before being made available for online viewing.

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