Daily Links Jul 3

Top Post
What happens when you give up plastic, and is it a lifestyle option for the lucky few?
Stephanie Convery
Reducing plastics when shopping for food, toiletries and travel products should be easy – so why is it so difficult?

Today’s Celebration
Danish West Indies Emancipation Day – US Virgin Islands
Day of the Child – Argentina
Independence Celebrations begin – Bahamas
Independence Day – Belarus
Festival of Cerridwen – Celticism
International Plastic Bag Free Day – https://www.daysoftheyear.com/days/international-plastic-bag-free-day/
Disobedience Day – https://www.daysoftheyear.com/days/disobedience-day/
More about Jul 3 – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/July_3

Climate Change
Kiribati government hits out at climate film
The Kiribati Government has criticised a film documenting the nation’s struggles with climate change, saying it does not follow ethical standards.

Climate change will worsen living standards in India
Changing rainfall patterns and rising temperatures will cost India 2.8% of its GDP and will drag down living standards of half its population by 2050, according to a World Bank study

China’s emissions reversal cause for ‘cautious optimism’ says study
The decline in China’s carbon emissions is likely to be sustained if changes to the country’s industrial structure and energy efficiency continue, according to new research led by the University of East Anglia.

World’s first animals caused global warming
The evolution of Earth’s first animals more than 500 million years ago caused global warming, new research shows.

Greenhouse gases were the main driver of climate change in the deep past
Greenhouse gases were the main driver of climate throughout the warmest period of the past 66 million years, providing insight into the drivers behind long-term climate change.

How climate change is spurring land conflict in Nigeria
Conflicts have claimed at least 86 lives.

Climate change is making night-shining clouds more visible
Increased water vapor in Earth’s atmosphere due to human activities is making shimmering high-altitude clouds more visible, a new study finds. The results suggest these strange but increasingly common clouds seen only on summer nights are an indicator of human-caused climate change, according to the study’s authors.

Republicans try to save their deteriorating party with another push for a carbon tax
Dana Nuccitelli
Like opposing civil rights and gay marriage, climate denial will drive voters away from the GOP

How researchers can help the world face up to its ‘wicked’ problems
Donna Mertens
We’re running out of time to deal with issues like climate change. Researchers must work at a local level to effect change.

The whole world is laughing at us
Australia, get a grip. We have to make a slight adjustment to the way we shop and people lose their minds to the point of violence.

Genes behind koala’s ‘iron stomach’ mapped for the first time
An Australian-led project has sequenced the entire koala genome, revealing secrets about the iconic animal’s unique biology that could help guide conservation efforts and fight disease.

Elephant ivory and rhino horn still for sale, for now
Items made of elephant ivory and rhinoceros horn are regularly, and legally, sold in Australia, but the Government is considering a change to the laws.

Carbon climate diverts Yancoal to Hong Kong [$]
Local fund managers shunning coal investment has encouraged Yancoal Australia to seek a dual listing in Hong Kong to access a deeper pool of capital.

Libs come ‘full circle’ on climate: Abbott
Tony Abbott has warned his Liberal colleagues the “wheel has turned full circle” on climate policy and compared the current push for a national energy guarantee to the party’s destabilising 2009 debate over an emissions trading scheme.

Businesses ‘don’t trust’ energy companies
Small businesses say they don’t trust energy companies as power prices continue to spike in most Australian states.

Resources minister lauds coal export stats
Coal will overtake iron ore as Australia’s biggest export earner for the first time in almost a decade.

Emission target $100m fine heavy: retailer
French retailer Engie has raised concerns about fines up to $100 million for companies that don’t comply with proposed emissions reduction targets.

Voters sceptical energy plan will bring down bills, Guardian Essential poll finds
Only 15% of those surveyed think the national energy guarantee will help reduce prices

Gas price to stay high but takeover target pool shrinking
Australia’s energy sector is in the midst of an enormous transition that is driving acquisitions but while the market expects more takeovers ahead, one major gas company believes the price peak may have passed.

EU bid to guard climate and animals in Australian trade deal [$]
Trade Minister Steven Ciobo has distanced Australia from an EU push to favour ­climate-friendly goods and the promotion of “EU standards on animal welfare” in the new European trade deal.

The big problem with plastic bags ban [$]
Ninety per cent of global plastic waste that enters the ocean comes from just 10 river systems in Asia and Africa, raising doubts about the overall impact of Australia’s plastic shopping bag bans. Do you agree with the ban?

Mostly working: Australia’s wholesale electricity market
Grattan Institute
High electricity prices are here to stay, according to this Grattan Institute report, that calls on politicians to tell Australians the truth about the future of energy costs.

The COALition’s coal infection: Is it contagious?
Graeme McLeay
When a number of apparently sane people suggest building more coal-fired power stations, we must consider what is causing the psychosis.

Fiona, get a grip on the facts[$]
Judith Sloan
NFF boss is onside with Frydenberg’s NEG but what about the interests of farmers?

Solar debate: It’s time we were given control [$]
Tim Williams and Lisa McLean
While Canberra continues to debate the merits of local solar and batteries and what future we can or can’t have, Australian people and businesses are taking the lead. They are voting with their feet, writes .

Lifeline for recyclers to stop Victoria’s waste meltdown
State’s beleaguered recycling system will get a $37m lifeline, reducing the amount of material that goes to landfill.

New city design rules to target bad – and good – building plans
Melbourne City Council wants the planning minister to give planners powers to discourage developers turning streets into unpleasant places.

Don’t stuff up CBD design rules shake-up
Age editorial
There is often a tension between developers’ understandable desire to maximise profit and the need to protect the interests of clients and the community.

New South Wales
Sydney soaked as NSW posts driest start to year in 30 years
Sydney clocks the most number of rainy days in June in more than half a century, belying the dry spell gripping farmers.

Bin the bag: time for shameful lack of action by Berejiklian to end
SMH editorial
Prohibit, forbid, proscribe, outlaw, make illegal, impose a moratorium or injunction. Perhaps this handy list of synonyms might help the NSW government, which has become the only legislature in Australia not to have introduced, or drafted, laws to ban the single use of plastic bags.

West Metro deserves bipartisan support
SMH editorial
The Coalition should put election politics aside and fast track a new rail line from the CBD to Parramatta.

Matt Canavan’s optimistic coal forecast contradicts his own department
Minister says ‘we’d be mad not to’ mine Galilee basin, despite report showing steep price drop from 2020

LNP to debate abortion, protecting Christmas and Adani’s rail line
LNP members are set to vote on a range of issues at the upcoming state convention, which will also feature an address by Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull.

‘People are trying’: Brisbane embraces coffee cup war on waste [$]
Coffee drinkers in Brisbane are leading the way nationally in reducing the amount of waste ending up in landfill, according to a sustainability organisation.

South Australia
Should NSW coal be replaced by South Australia wind and solar?
ElectraNet proposes new link from S.A. that it says will unlock more low-cost renewable energy sources, reduce reliance on expensive gas, and help fill the gap caused by the retirement of more coal generators in NSW.

Firefighters responding to fire at OneSteel recycling facility in Port Adelaide [$]
Firefighters are responding to a “significant” fire at the OneSteel recycling facility in Port Adelaide.

Can vertical farms reap their harvest? It’s anyone’s bet.
Indoor-grown produce is available in more than 20 supermarket chains across the country. But despite massive investment, questions remain about vertical farming’s efficiency and costs.

Will Antarctic icebergs solve fresh water crisis in UAE?
The UAE Iceberg Project is an economically, technically and commercially feasible idea now.

More Hanford nuclear waste tanks at risk of leaking radioactive waste
Problems have been found in the condition of more of the Hanford nuclear reservation’s double-shell tanks holding radioactive waste, putting them at risk of leaks. Corrosion has caused thinning of the tank shells.

How nuclear explosions were used to save the environment
It seems strange to us now to think of nuclear bombs as just another tool for engineers to shape our environment.

Artificial Intelligence Accurately Predicts Distribution of Radioactive Fallout
Researchers have created a machine-learning-based tool that can predict where radioactive emissions from nuclear power plants will disperse

The vanishing nuclear industry
Could nuclear power make a significant contribution to decarbonizing the US energy system over the next three or four decades? That is the question asked by four current and former researchers from Carnegie Mellon University. Their answer: probably not.

What happens when you give up plastic, and is it a lifestyle option for the lucky few?
Stephanie Convery
Reducing plastics when shopping for food, toiletries and travel products should be easy – so why is it so difficult?

Nature Conservation
Narwhals most vulnerable to increased shipping in Arctic
As ice melts, more ships will move through the habitat of Canada’s tusked whale.

A unique nature insurance policy aims to preserve Mexico’s Great Mayan Reef
Part of the Mesoamerican Reef has just come off the list of endangered UNESCO heritage. In Mexico, mass tourism is to fund a first-of-its-kind insurance plan to restore its reefs after hurricanes. But challenges remain.

Loss of lemurs might endanger many of Madagascar’s largest tree species
Widespread logging and hunting have endangered virtually all of Madagascar’s 100-plus species of iconic lemurs, and a new study by Rice University ecologists illustrates how saving the animals may also be key to saving the island’s largest trees.

Is it time yet? Climate change disturbs breeding and nesting season in birds
Shifting seasons and unseasonal monsoon conditions have been affecting cues for the Sarus crane’s nesting season, a trend seen among other birds too.

New Zealand the most perilous place for seabirds due to plastic pollution
‘Seabird capital of the world’ is home to dozens of endemic species, which are particularly vulnerable to plastics.

How mangroves help keep the planet cool
In a new global framework, scientists have developed a more accurate assessment of how mangroves store carbon in their soil. The researchers found that previous studies have underestimated the blue carbon levels in mangroves by up to 50 percent in some regions and overestimated levels by up to 86 percent in others. This study published recently in Nature Climate Change will help countries develop and evaluate their carbon footprint and blue carbon inventory that potentially can be used in the global marketplace.

Now for something completely different …
Charities Secure ASIC Exemption
Charities have secured an exemption from paying the new Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) levy, ensuring fee-free regulation for all charities.

Maelor Himbury