Daily Links Aug 10

Top Post
Surprise! Trees are gaining ground globally
Amid wildfires, climate change, insect outbreaks and deforestation, news about forests can seem like one long-running disaster.

Today’s Celebration
Independence of Quito – Ecuador
St. Lawrence Day – Spain
Qiangtang Kyagqen Horse Racing Festivals – Tibet
International Biodiesel Day – http://words.yovo.info/2006/08/10/happy-biodiesel-day/
World Lion Day – https://www.daysoftheyear.com/days/lion-day/
Lazy Day – https://www.daysoftheyear.com/days/lazy-day/
More about Aug 10 –
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/August _10

Climate Change
Half a degree less warming can avoid precipitation extremes
The scientists found that by reducing the global warming limit by 0.5°C, a significant number of extreme precipitation events and their impacts could be avoided.

YouTube is fighting back against climate misinformation
The company is trying to combat scientific misinformation on its platform. Wikipedia has been helping the streaming platform describe topics like global warming, the MMR vaccine, and UFOs.

From greenhouse to hothouse: The language of climate change
Feedback effects could spark irreversible global warming, says scientists. But what does use of the word ‘hothouse’ imply?

The message of a scorching 2018: We’re not prepared for global warming
It’s hot. But it may not be the new normal yet. Temperatures are still rising.

Geoengineering method found wanting
Proponents of geoengineering as a way to mitigate the effects of global warming have been dealt a blow, with a study in the journal Nature concluding that one of the most favoured methods will do more harm than good.

Global warming could be in reverse by 2050 if we take action now
Chad Frischmann
Project Drawdown’s research director says the paradigm around global warming needs to change into one of possibility and opportunity.

AGL full year profit almost trebles on higher electricity prices
AGL generates a strong 194 per cent increase in profit on the back of higher electricity prices and the closure of Hazelwood and Northern power plants.

We’re all going on a scat hunt: how citizen science can help save echidnas
Ordinary Australians are making a difference for teams that rely on raw data such as the University of Adelaide’s recent project on the monotremes

States set to resist but not reject the NEG
Labor and Greens ministers will push for changes to the National Energy Guarantee at a key meeting today, as calls grow for the Government to strengthen its targets and release its modelling.

What does the NEG mean for real cases, real people?
A small Brisbane café, a large sports stadium — both have to deal with massive electricity costs, both are worried, and both want to know: will the NEG help me?

Frydenberg talks up blackouts as top advisor concedes no forecast power shortages
Labor states including Victoria express grave concerns over the policy and say the deal should not be rushed.

Greens push for energy modelling release
The Greens will move a Senate motion to force the government to release full modelling of the national energy guarantee.

Will the national energy guarantee stall or speed up progress? – Australian politics live podcast
With a make-or-break set of meetings on the Turnbull government’s national energy guarantee kicking off, Katharine Murphy talks to Ken Baldwin, the director of the energy change institute at the Australian National University. Will the Neg halt a transformation into renewables that is already being driven by the global energy market? Or will it set the future foundations for climate and energy policy across Australia?

States being asked to approve NEG mechanism that increases emissions
Ric Brazzale
On top of that, the $150 average annual household saving the ESB claims is due to the NEG is illusory, and based on heroic demand assumptions.

Big little lies: The rotten core that could kill the NEG
Giles Parkinson
Australia is in the midst of a clean energy transition. All the members of the ESB admit that and have said they embrace it. Even Frydenberg has admitted this.
To produce a document that claims to be able to stop this transition in its tracks – and to endorse it without showing a transition can be readily accommodated – beggars belief.

The half-baked NEG needs more time in the oven
Simon Holmes à Court
The national energy guarantee, as it currently stands, is not a solution to the problems it purports to address – but there’s time to fix it

The NEG’s not nirvana but it can’t be allowed to slip away
Mark Coughlin
We’re in danger of more price volatility and significant power outages if the National Energy Guarantee doesn’t get over the line.

Small business needs the National Energy Guarantee
Peter Strong
The uncertainty over energy prices and supply is another business pressure that our sector can’t afford.

Promised savings under NEG need closer inspection
Peter Hannam
Remember how Tony Abbott’s promise to scrap the carbon tax was going to save the average Australian household $550 a year? It appears we are stuck in a moment of deja vu.

Owner of euthanased pet foxes says they’re no more a pest than cats
The owner of three pet foxes says she should have been able to keep the animals because they were no more dangerous to the environment than cats.

Meter shock sparks power bill proposal [$]
Victorians would potentially save hundreds of dollars on their power bill under a proposal to allow customers to read their own electricity and gas meters instead of relying on dodgy estimates.

Transport Minister told to fix the trains, not the news [$]
Almost half of Victorians do not catch trains, trams and buses as they are deterred by overcrowding, availability and punctuality problems, a new poll reveals, while the state’s Public Transport Minister wastes time dictating what can be shown on station TVs.

Stop throwing gold into the bin [$]
Stan Krpan
Did you know that those broken phones, tablets and computers contain a whole range of precious materials — including gold, silver and copper? We are literally throwing gold into the rubbish bin.

Political upside to power price pain [$]
Matt Johnston
Two days ago I received a $50 cheque in the mail. It was a taxpayer-funded inducement from the State Government, sent after I visited an energy website designed to get me a better power deal.

New South Wales
Study looks at relocating captive dolphins to sea sanctuary
A study is launched that will look at whether the last five captive dolphins in New South Wales can be transferred to a sea pen sanctuary, in a move proponents say would be globally significant.

NSW backs Turnbull’s national energy plan
NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian says NSW will support the federal government’s National Energy Guarantee, which she believes will lower power prices.

‘Shifting goalposts’: NSW gives Victoria serve over energy plan block
NSW has accused Victoria of jeopardising the interests of its electricity users by making a last-minute call to delay talks on the Turnbull government’s National Energy Guarantee.

Smoke from hazard reduction burn blankets Sydney Harbour
It may have alarmed some tourists, but Fire & Rescue NSW says “the whole thing went to plan”.

Forced to cop $3b green energy rip-off [$]
Sydneysiders have been paying almost $3 billion into a green energy slush fund that funded a solar bonus scheme and a seawall study but has so far cut the country’s emissions by little more than 1 per cent.

Flow Power contracts 50MW from proposed Queensland wind farm
Flow Power to take about half the output from new Queensland wind farm to deliver cheap renewable electricity to corporate customers in that state.

‘We haven’t received NEG details’: Qld
Queensland officials say they are yet to receive the full detail of the Turnbull government’s National Energy Guarantee ahead of a crucial meeting.

The information Adani spent a year trying to hide
Documents Adani fought to keep secret appear to show both the company and the Queensland Government knew it was likely to breach its licence before it spilled polluted water into the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park.

#Reefgate: GBRF plans to hold onto its $443 million lottery win
Martin Hirst
The Great Barrier Reef Foundation has no intention of returning its $443 million funding deal, writes Dr Martin Hirst

‘Never been as bad as this’: The Queensland kids who have never seen rain
Madonna King
A child born in 2011 in some western parts of Queensland is now in year 2 – and they have never seen rain. They’ve never witnessed the skies darken, and the heavens open.

Outrageous grant to reef foundation threatens vital public research
Kim Carr
By giving this money to a private foundation, the government has sidelined Australia’s publicly funded research agencies.

South Australia
Electric vehicles inquiry to meet in SA
A Senate committee investigating the use of electric vehicles in Australia will hold its first public hearing in Adelaide on Friday.

SA welfare groups urge caution over ‘unfair’ energy guarantee
The South Australian Council of Social Service and Uniting Communities have urged the State Government to consider what they describe as “critical” changes to the National Energy Guarantee to protect the interests of South Australians on low incomes.

Tasmania’s ‘Battery of the Nation’ not in Federal Government’s energy plan: academic
The Federal Government’s vision for the country’s energy future does not include Tasmania’s plan to become the “battery of the nation”, a University of Melbourne academic says.

Mount Wellington cable car project hits council hurdle as backers revealed
As the ABC reveals backers of the Mount Wellington cable car project, the proposal faces an early hurdle from the Hobart City Council.

Vision of Tasmanian devil waiting for ‘friend’ shocks researchers
Never-before seen behaviour by Tasmanian devils has been caught on camera, raising questions about the long-held belief that they are solitary creatures.

Northern Territory
Bushfire in NT threatening properties
Authorities in the Northern Territory say a bushfire near Adelaide River is threatening properties.

Authorities say Borroloola drinking water is safe — but many residents don’t trust them
Indigenous residents living in the Northern Territory mining town of Borroloola said they do not believe assurances from the Health Department that water they were warned not to drink in April is now safe.

Western Australia
WA could miss out on $2b in green funds warns Wyatt
WA is at risk of missing out on $2 billion of investment in wind farms and solar projects unless the Federal Government includes the State in its new climate policy, Energy Minister Ben Wyatt warns.

Scientists create biodegradable, paper-based biobatteries
The batteries of the future may be made out of paper.

Ultra-fast EV chargers eliminate the hydrogen “advantage”
One of the last advantages touted for the hydrogen fuel-cell electric vehicle (FCEV) over the battery electric car (BEV) is the speed of hydrogen refuelling vs battery charging.

Environmental Regulations Drove Steep Declines in US Factory Pollution
A new study by economists shows that between 1990 and 2008, air pollution levels plummeted.

China’s Qinghai province runs on renewables for 216 hours
China’s northwestern Qinghai Province taps internet-of-things to run for seven straight days entirely on renewable energy.

North American diets require more land than we have, study finds
Researchers found that if the global population followed the United States Department of Agriculture’s dietary guidelines, there would not be enough land to provide the food required.

American Beauties
How plastic bags came to rule our lives, and why we can’t quit them. Advice from the 1950s: “If the plastics industry wants to drive sales, it must teach customers how to waste.”

Cities in the face of drought
What can be done to prevent five billion people suffering from water shortages by 2050?

US EPA ordered to ban pesticide linked to learning disabilities
A federal court said the agency must prohibit the use of chlorpyrifos after seven states and DC backed the case against it

Nagasaki marks 73 years since A-bombing
The UN’s chief has urged world leaders to take concrete steps toward nuclear disarmament as he attended an event marking the bombing of Nagasaki 73 years ago.

Want to fight climate change? Look in your fridge
Karolina Skog
Though few realize it, the contents of your refrigerator can have a greater impact on climate change than the car in your garage or the fuel that heats and powers your home

Nature Conservation
Researchers say high seas fisheries play limited role in feeding the world
Fishing fleets operating outside of national waters contribute less than 3 percent to the world’s seafood supply. This finding goes against the common assertion that high seas fisheries are important for food security.

For the first time, scientists are putting extinct mammals on the map
Researchers from Aarhus University and University of Gothenburg have produced the most comprehensive family tree and atlas of mammals to date, connecting all living and recently extinct mammal species (nearly 6,000 in total) and overturning many previous ideas about global patterns of biodiversity

Good news for fishermen: Browning impacts fish less than expected
Water color is getting darker in lakes across the planet. This phenomenon, known as ‘browning,’ was anticipated to cause widespread declines in fish populations. A new study by researchers from Umeå University, Sweden, finds that the number of fish populations impacted by browning is smaller than previously believed.

Surprise! Trees are gaining ground globally
Amid wildfires, climate change, insect outbreaks and deforestation, news about forests can seem like one long-running disaster.

How retired engineer plans to remove 40 tonnes of faeces from Everest
In the two months that it takes to ascend the mountain, the average climber will produce 27 kilograms of excrement. Garry Porter has devised a way to get rid of it.

NASA Satellites Assist States in Estimating Abundance of Key Wildlife Species
Climate and land-use change are shrinking natural wildlife habitats around the world.

Marine mammals have lost a gene that now they may desperately need
Dolphins, manatees, sea lions, elephant seals and other animals no longer produce an enzyme that protects land mammals against harmful chemicals, including some pesticides.

Now for something completely different …
Five Ways Charities Can Maximise Donations Online
Charities can incentivise donations using their social media pages and website, writes Content For A Cause co-founder Nicholas Soraghan, who offers his tips for organisations to increase their donation potential.

Maelor Himbury