Daily Links Mar 2

Sorry, no reception at Refuge Cove.

Top Post
Water shortages could affect 5bn people by 2050, UN report warns
Conflict and civilisational threats likely unless action is taken to reduce the stress on rivers, lakes, aquifers, wetlands and reservoirs

Today’s Celebration
Abolition Day    Puerto Rico
Independence Day   Tunisia
Petroleum Day    Iran
Legba Zaou    Voudon
Naw Ruz (New Year)  Baha’i
World Frog Day     https://frogsource.com/posts/world-frog-day
International Day of Happiness   https://www.daysoftheyear.com/days/international-day-of-happiness/
World Storytelling Day   https://www.daysoftheyear.com/days/world-storytelling-day/
Proposal Day     https://www.daysoftheyear.com/days/proposal-day/
Won’t You Be My Neighbor Day   https://www.daysoftheyear.com/days/wont-you-be-my-neighbor-day/
More about Mar 20   https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/March_20

Climate Change
Climate change soon to cause mass movement, World Bank warns
140m people in three regions expected to migrate before 2050 unless environment is improved

UN Arctic chief: ‘Climate change isn’t linear – it’s accelerating’
Climate change is most evident in the Polar Regions and its impact will serve as a litmus test for what happens to the rest of the planet, the UN’s chief Arctic adviser told EURACTIV in an interview.

Billion-dollar polar engineering ‘needed to slow melting glaciers’
Underwater sea walls and artificial islands among projects urgently required to avoid devastation of global flooding, say scientists.

Stark differences in climate impacts between 1.5 and 2 degrees of warming
A difference of just half a degree of global warming, from 1.5 to 2 degrees Celsius, would mean that an additional 5 million people worldwide will have the land where their homes are located be permanently submerged underwater, according to a new study published in the journal Environmental Research Letters.

Historians to climate researchers: Let’s talk
Ours is not the first society to be confronted by massive environmental change. Over the course of history, some societies have been destroyed by natural disasters, like Pompeii, while others have learned how to accommodate floods, droughts, volcanic eruptions and other natural hazards. The key is how a society plans for and interacts with the stress from nature, say Princeton University historians John Haldon and Lee Mordechai.

So close, yet so far: Making climate impacts feel nearby may not inspire action
Jonathon Schuldt, assistant professor of communication at Cornell University, says it is possible to make faraway climate impacts feel closer. But that doesn’t automatically inspire the American public to express greater support for policies that address it. The paper appeared in the Journal of Environmental Psychology.

Arctic sea ice becoming a spring hazard for North Atlantic ships
More Arctic sea ice is entering the North Atlantic Ocean than before, making it increasingly dangerous for ships to navigate those waters in late spring, according to new research.

Glacier mass loss: Past the point of no return
Researchers from the Universities of Bremen and Innsbruck show in a recent study that the further melting of glaciers cannot be prevented in the current century — even if all emissions were stopped now. However, due to the slow reaction of glaciers to climate change, our behavior has a massive impact beyond the 21st century: In the long run, five hundred meters by car with a mid-range vehicle will cost one kilogram of glacier ice. The study has now been published in Nature Climate Change.

Thawing permafrost produces more methane than expected
In a seven-year laboratory study, Dr. Christian Knoblauch from Universität Hamburg’s Center for Earth System Research and Sustainability (CEN) and an international team have shown, for the first time, that significantly more methane is produced by thawing permafrost than previously thought. The findings, published in Nature Climate Change, make it possible to better predict how much greenhouse gas could be released by the thawing of the Arctic permafrost.

Human influence on climate change will fuel more extreme heat waves in US
Human-caused climate change will drive more extreme summer heat waves in the western US, including in California and the Southwest as early as 2020, new research shows.

Cutting Carbon Emissions Sooner Could Save 153 Million Lives
As many as 153 million premature deaths linked to air pollution could be avoided worldwide this century if governments speed up their timetable for reducing fossil fuel emissions, a new study …

Energy market commission says electricity grid increasingly unstable
Instability attributed to changes in power mix that can leave grid at mercy of the weather

Regional forest agreement renewals spark fresh forest wars
RFAs were meant to protect forests and create a sustainable timber industry, but as renewals approach both sides are readying for battle

Australians will have to get used to drinking recycled water
As our population grows and climate change bites, urban water experts say cities will have to start using treated sewage for drinking water.

We need to change how we control energy, AEMC says
Australia has the electricity it needs to keep the lights on but it has been unprepared for the rush of new solar and wind power.

What is the NEG and what will it do?
Why do we need a National Energy Guarantee, what will it do, and how?

‘Climate change to blame’ for natural disasters [$]
The Greens have blamed the federal government’s failure to address climate change for a cyclone and bushfires which have ravaged communities across Australia over the past 48 hours.

Sidelining citizens when deciding on transport projects is asking for trouble
Crystal Legacy, University of Melbourne
Transport infrastructure has such an impact on what kind of city we become that more democratic planning is long overdue. But public consultation is typically limited and focused on design issues.

Cycling and walking are short-changed when it comes to transport funding in Australia
Dorina Pojani, Anthony Kimpton, Jonathan Corcoran and Neil Sipe, The University of Queensland

Big city blinkers in the Big Australia debate
Jack Archer
Our network of small cities must be part of the big Australia debate

Bring gas supply into 21st century
SMH editorial
The gas market lacks a fundamental element – price transparency.

Gearing system to handle energy [$]
Anne Pearson
We are not running out of electricity; the problem is the national grid has become more unstable with the changing generation mix.

GE to build the world’s largest offshore wind turbines
GE plans to build the world’s largest offshore wind turbines, which are so tall they would dominate Melbourne’s skyline.

Greens lose byelection and policy credibility [$]
Bernard Keane

New South Wales
Taxes may be key to emissions cuts [$]
Agriculture should pay its way as part of an emissions trading scheme, a southern NSW farmer says.

Dams to deep seas at Newcrest
Matthew Stevens
Newcrest finds itself uncomfortably poised at the polar extremes of the mining industry’s relentless waste management dilemma.

Seventy properties destroyed in NSW bushfire catastrophe

Find strength in each other: a message to the people of Tathra
Sergio Rosato
Four years after fires devastated the Blue Mountains, many have not yet recovered.

Firefighters work overnight to bring Namadgi bushfire under control
Firefighters will work through the night for the second day in a row as they fight a bush and grass fire in Namadgi National Park.

South Australia
Marshall’s first promise as SA premier: Kill Tesla battery plan
New SA Premier Steven Marshall vows to scrap Tesla’s plans for world’s biggest virtual power plant targeting low income households, in favour of a $100 million subsidy for those homes already with solar.

Murray near parched
Water managers have warned that the Lower Murray’s future is at a tipping point as they struggle to supply booming irrigation developments that could almost double demand within five years.

What did Steven Marshall promise to do if elected?
After 16 years in opposition, the Liberal Party has had plenty of time to come up with policies. Here’s a look at some of the key promises.

Wind, solar make it hard to keep lights on, report warns [$]
Weather-driven power generation is the key cause of growing instability in the national energy grid, which is increasingly threatening to shut off the lights, a report warns.

Speed of Australia’s energy transition hostage to Marshall law
Giles Parkinson
Election of Steve Marshall – and expectation he will be a vassal of Coalition in Canberra – likely to do more damage to country’s renewable energy transition than that of his state. Jay Weatherill will be missed, but he leaves SA with huge momentum.

Mt Wellington Cable Car Company could face fine over social media video
A video promoting the proposed cable car on kunanyi/Mount Wellington could cost the company a $1,500 fine for filming in the mountain park without permission.

City of Launceston’s public trees ‘a valuable asset’, under new policy approved by council
A refreshed policy on the care of Launceston’s 30,000 council-managed trees has been approved by the City of Launceston Council.

Fuzzy logic on forest carbon blurs climate action debate [$]
Peter Boyer
Plantation industry in Tasmania finds way to make money while nationally the battle rages

Northern Territory
Wild quolls take bait of cane-toad sausages, offering hope for species
Wildlife managers hope taste aversion technique can help safeguard the endangered northern quoll

Second cyclone to head to Darwin within days [$]
Another cyclone could be headed for Darwin by the end of this week, as the clean up from Cyclone Marcus goes on

New coral bleaching outbreak in NT a worrying sign of our warming oceans
Selina Ward, The University of Queensland
Coral bleaching has struck the Northern Territory, adding urgency to the need for better national management strategies for our warming oceans.

Western Australia
Garden full of weeds in Field of the Unwanted shines spotlight on untapped beauty
The Green Brigade, a group of artists from Fremantle, has carefully cultivated a garden of weeds to challenge perceptions about what is useful and attractive.

Report says WA fracking would blow Australia’s whole carbon budget
Climate Analytics director Bill Hare said the new report showed carbon pollution from WA natural gas was an issue of international significance.

Water shortages could affect 5bn people by 2050, UN report warns
Conflict and civilisational threats likely unless action is taken to reduce the stress on rivers, lakes, aquifers, wetlands and reservoirs

London air pollution activists ‘prepared to go to prison’ to force action
Group of campaigners arrested after spray painting mayor’s offices as part of a series of direct action protests over of the capital’s illegal air pollution

A battery recycling plant owned by Indian businessmen caused a lead poisoning crisis in Kenya
A car battery recycling plant poisoned scores of children. For Phyllis Omido, exposing them meant risking her life.

Indonesia aims to tackle plastic waste
Plastic waste polluting the ocean remained a major concern that must be addressed by all concerned parties, a minister said on Sunday.

A running list of how Trump is changing the environment
The Trump administration has promised vast changes to U.S. science and environmental policy – and we’re tracking them here as they happen.

Global energy giants forced to adapt to rise of renewables
Companies face world where falling cost of solar and wind power pushes down prices.

Long-term monitoring is essential to effective environmental policy
Environmental policy guided by science saves lives, money, and ecosystems. So reports a team of eleven senior researchers in Environmental Science & Policy.

Environmentally friendly cattle production (really)
When cattle congregate, they’re often cast as the poster animals for overgrazing, water pollution and an unsustainable industry. While some of the criticism is warranted, cattle production — even allowing herds to roam through grasslands and orchards — can be beneficial to the environment as well as sustainable.

How tree bonds can help preserve the urban forest
Joe Hurley et al
Great cities need trees to be great places, but urban changes put pressure on the existing trees as cities develop. As a result, our rapidly growing cities are losing trees at a worrying rate. So how can we grow our cities and save our city trees?

Nature Conservation
Mountain pine beetles are devastating forests in the worst outbreak ever
Despite being smaller than a grain of rice, mountain pine beetles are causing big problems for pine forests across North America.

Detection, deterrent system will help eagles, wind turbines coexist better
Researchers have taken a key step toward helping wildlife coexist more safely with wind power generation by demonstrating the success of an impact detection system that uses vibration sensors mounted to turbine blades.

Amazon deforestation is close to tipping point
Scientists considered climate change and indiscriminate use of fire to calculate that deforestation rates ranging from 20 percent to 25 percent could turn Amazon’s hydrological cycle unable to support its ecosystem.

Climate change threatens world’s largest seagrass carbon stores
Shark Bay seagrass carbon storage hotspot suffers alarming losses after a devastating marine heat wave, according to a study led by ICTA-Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona researchers. The loss of seagrass would have released up to nine million metric tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) into the atmosphere.

Saving the Everglades is taking far too long
Carl Hiaasen
If all that goes smoothly — which would be miraculous — the most optimistic prediction for finishing the reservoir and its 6,500-acre cleansing marsh is in eight years.

Now for something completely different …
Why union members earn higher wages than their non-union colleagues
Craig McMillan et al
Over recent decades in Australia union membership has fallen from 40% of the workforce in 1990 to 15% in 2016 and so unions might seem less relevant in making a difference to what we earn. But our research finds that union members do earn higher wages per hour than non-union members.

Maelor Himbury