Daily Links Jun 23

Top Post
You probably missed the latest national environmental-economic accounts – but why?
Michael Vardon, Australian National University
Water and energy use are becoming more efficient, which is good news for both the economy and the environment. But Australia has yet to realise the value of national environmental accounting.

Today’s Celebration
Grand Duke’s Birthday – Luxembourg
Independence Day (Jura only) – Switzerland
Jonines (summer solstice) Night – Lithuania
Ligo Day – Latvia
Midsummer Party – Denmark
Maelor’s Birthday – International
Victory Day – Estonia
Jonsok / Sankthansaften / Midsummer’s Eve – Norway
Let It Go Day – https://www.daysoftheyear.com/days/let-it-go-day/
International Widows Day – https://www.daysoftheyear.com/days/international-widows-day/
International Women in Engineering Day – https://www.daysoftheyear.com/days/women-in-engineering-day/
More about Jun 23 – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/June_23

Climate Change
A quick rebound of Antarctic crust promotes ice-sheet stability
The unexpectedly rapid rebound of the Amundsen Sea Embayment (ASE) may help stabilize the West Antarctic Ice Sheet against catastrophic collapse, says a new study offering a rare silver-lining in glacier research.

Where all the unused plastic bags are going
The plastic bag ban has many shoppers in a tizz. Now some are asking if all the millions of withdrawn single-use bags are heading straight to landfill.

Farmers’ federation lines up against Tony Abbott on national energy guarantee
Growing number of Liberals and Nationals also warn against scuttling the policy

Plastic-bag ban likened to religion [$]
The impending removal from supermarkets of plastic bags is based on ‘complete furphies’ about their harm, study finds.

Australian’s space mission to measure world groundwater reserves
An Australian professor has developed satellite technology used by NASA, which will measure the world’s freshwater reserves from space.

Crikey! Crocs heading south and other changes forecast for Australia’s wildlife
The chances of limiting climate change appear to be growing slimmer by the day — and this may have big implications for Australia’s wildlife.

Small solar installs pass 3 million mark in Australia
Small-scale solar systems installed by Australian homes and businesses have passed the three million-mark, with one in five homes now generating their own power.

Chart of the day: Cats are killing almost 2 million lizards a day
Birds are a favourite snack of feral cats, but the felines are killing a different type of native animal in even bigger numbers.

Coalition climate deniers play havoc again with energy
Giles Parkinson
You’d think they’d be grateful: Malcolm Turnbull and Josh Frydenberg went to the effort of designing a climate and energy policy that does nothing, and Tony Abbott and friends are still complaining that it does too much.

Can Frydenberg do a Cormann on energy? [$]
Laura Tingle
Energy Minister Josh Frydenberg must do on power what Finance Minister Mathias Cormann has just pulled off on tax.

You probably missed the latest national environmental-economic accounts – but why?
Michael Vardon, Australian National University
Water and energy use are becoming more efficient, which is good news for both the economy and the environment. But Australia has yet to realise the value of national environmental accounting.

You won’t get renewables without coal and gas
John Constable
It will still take time for significant levels of self-reproducing deployment. And renewables aren’t yet autocatalytic.

Thinking about battery storage? Five things you should do first
Jonathan Prendergast
There is a lot you should do before getting battery storage for you home. Here are 5 steps households should take before making the leap.

An act of sheer madness
Chris Kenny
Our climate gestures have no impact on the global environment, so the hardship and expense is all for nothing.

AEMO gets it RERT after rule maker does a backflip
Sophie Vorrath & Giles Parkinson
Energy market rule-maker reinstates long dated emergency reserve, just months after it had dumped it.

Fridge chewing more power than it should? Ask your smart meter
Sophie Vorrath
Is your TV running? Not the opening line of a joke, but serious question smart meter giant Landis+Gyr wants to be able to answer for customers – before they even ask.

Toxic fears: Farmers warned not to eat the beef they sell
Gippsland farmers have been warned not to eat homegrown meat due to toxic chemicals – but they can still sell it.

Andrews, Guy give thumbs down to Capp’s ‘ridiculous’ CBD traffic plan
The lord mayor’s radical proposal to reduce car numbers in Melbourne’s CBD has been shot down by both the government and opposition.

Bendigo District Australian Conservation Foundation to protest new coal projects in Rosalind Park rally
A rally at Rosalind Park led by the Bendigo District Australian Conservation Foundation will protest against the coal industry on June 30.

New South Wales
The ‘pinosaurs’ being fire-proofed to last another 200 million years
The Wollemi pine was thought to be extinct until 100 of the Jurassic-era conifers were found in 1994: Now a new colony in the wild is taking off.

Frog call app to help save species [$]
Tiny green tree frogs are popping up to say hello and be counted as part of the first national count of the amphibians for the Australian Museum’s free FrogID app.

How CSIRO researchers are tracking the evolution of Australian insects
Using the DNA of some insects, and inspecting others fossilised in 100 million-year-old amber, researchers are building an evolutionary tree.

From Portland to Canberra, on the light rail track
Meghan Oldfield, who is managing Canberra’s light rail project, says Canberra is poised for change

Parliament House light rail route may be more direct, but it’s not cheaper
It’s the faster option but a number of factors make the route problematic.

Each month light rail is delayed, Canberra Metro will lose millions
Canberra Metro stands to lose between $2.8 million and $4.7 million each month Canberra’s light rail project is delayed, money it will never recoup because of the way the contract is designed, ACT government officials say.

Worldwide search will be launched to find companies to build Brisbane Metro
A worldwide search to try to find the best companies to build Brisbane’s tunnels and metro vehicles is about to start.

‘Vintage’ plastic bags for sale [$]
It seems a Queenslander man has found a silver ‘liner’ to the statewide plastic shopping bag ban.

‘No evidence’ for Adani corruption probe [$]
Allegations of corruption against Adani and the Isaac Regional Council have been thrown out by the Crime and Corruption Commission over a lack of evidence.

South Australia
Driverless cars a jobs boon for some in SA, not for others
Even as it poses a serious threat to transport jobs in South Australia, the impending autonomous vehicle revolution is likely to be a boon for advanced manufacturing workers here, Transport Minister Stephan Knoll says.

Power network ‘cuts’ female staff from pay talks [$]
Unions are calling on power transmission specialist ElectraNet to drop its plan to remove 85 per cent of its female workforce from its Enterprise Bargaining Agreement.

Spotted handfish warm to ceramic spawning habitats
An artist has handcrafted 3,000 artificial habitats for Derwent River’s critically endangered fish.

Nature remains strong in our state [$]
Simon Bevilacqua
When newspapers around the country published a story about a 3m shark that had washed up on Bondi Beach last week I felt a little embarrassed.

Western Australia
Rinehart plays peacemaker over national park plan [$]
Gina Rinehart isn’t someone to shy away from a fight but Australia’s richest woman is taking on the role of peacemaker over plans to turn some of her best northern cattle country into a national park.

Researchers solve major challenge in mass production of low-cost solar cells
A team led by led by André D. Taylor of NYU Tandon School of Engineering and Yifan Zheng of Peking University solved a major fabrication challenge for perovskite cells — the intriguing potential challengers to silicon-based solar cells. In a cover article in the June 28, 2018 issue of Nanoscale, a publication of the Royal Society of Chemistry, the team reveals a new scalable means of applying the compound PCBM, a critical component, to perovskite cells.

Hyundai and Audi join forces to further fuel cell vehicles
Bridie Schmidt
Two of the world’s best known automotive manufacturers continue push into fuel cell vehicle technologies, even though sales just a fraction of EVs.

Nature Conservation
New World Atlas of Desertification shows unprecedented pressure on planet’s resources
The World Desertification Atlas by the European Commission’s Joint Research Centre provides the first comprehensive, evidence-based assessment of land degradation at a global level and highlights the urgency to adopt corrective measures.

Envisioning a future where all the trees in Europe disappear
Global climate change is already affecting the planet, as demonstrated by the shrinking polar ice cap, melting glaciers and cities in the grips of longer, more intense heat waves. Now a team of researchers has conducted a radical thought experiment on how extreme land use changes could influence future climate.

Maelor Himbury