Daily Links Feb 6

I’ve gone off-list with this one. It is a superb piece of writing about a deeply disturbing subject. We’re off on Monday for two weeks to walk the South Coast Track in Tasmania, if the fires will let us have access to Cockle Creek. We’re prepared for serious sadness.

Post of the Day

Could climate change make Australia uninsurable?

Right now, Townsville is more or less underwater and large parts of Tasmania are on fire. But once the world looks away, there’s the question of who will pay the bill.


Today’s Celebration

Bob Marley Day – Jamaica

New Zealand Day – New Zealand

Waitangi Day – New Zealand, Niue

Sami National Day – Finland, Norway, Sweden

International Day of Zero Tolerance to Female Genital Mutilation

More about Feb 6


Climate Change

‘People’s payout’ gathers steam as a fairer way to tax carbon

How the revenues from levies on fossil fuel are used – and communicating the benefits of a greener economy to citizens – are essential to gain public acceptance, experts say.


U.S. intelligence community recognizes climate change in worldwide threat assessment

The 2019 Worldwide Threat Assessment of the US Intelligence Community, released on January 29, mentions climate change as a threat that is “likely to fuel competition for resources, economic distress, and social discontent through 2019 and beyond.”


Analysis: Why the UK’s CO2 emissions have fallen 38% since 1990

Zeke Hausfather

The UK’s CO2 emissions peaked in the year 1973 and have declined faster than any other major developed country. Here’s how.



Climate change set to disrupt Australia’s summer sports calendar

Heat, rainfall, droughts, cyclones and bushfires are all on the rise, Climate Council warns


‘You would have to be in deep denial’: Scientist slams govts over climate action

One of Australia’s leading scientists has warned both the Queensland and federal governments that they are not keeping pace with the impacts of climate change.


Energy CEOs claims questioned [$]

The CEOs of AGL Energy and Origin Energy have been quizzed by a Senate inquiry over their arguments against the government’s “big stick” divestment bill.


‘We weren’t asked’: key advisers sidelined on big stick energy laws

Key organisations responsible for helping keep the lights on say they were scarcely consulted on landmark reforms.


Could climate change make Australia uninsurable?

Right now, Townsville is more or less underwater and large parts of Tasmania are on fire. But once the world looks away, there’s the question of who will pay the bill.


Will Australia seize opportunity to lead region’s renewable hydrogen market?

Australia has the resource, our Asian neighbours and trading partners need it. The opportunity to store and ship renewable energy in bulk, liquid, transportable form exists now.


Coalition energy plan “unworkable”, as Taylor charges into coal

The Coalition government has been warned – yet again – that its proposed “big stick” intervention into Australia’s energy markets is unworkable and will kill investment, even as energy minister Angus Taylor tries to force through before the election what might be the last gasp for coal investment in Australia.


King coal now tops export earners [$]

Coal has overtaken iron ore as the nation’s biggest export earner.


Major Brands Unite to Launch Zero-Waste Shopping Platform [$]

A zero-waste shopping platform letting people buy a variety of products in customised packaging that is then collected, cleaned, refilled and reused has been unveiled by a group of major consumer product companies.


Businesses Called On to Help Clean Up Australia

Australian businesses are being encouraged to sign up for 2019 Business Clean Up Day to help launch a world record attempt.



Andrews ‘must release secret list of high-risk cladding buildings’

The Andrews government should be transparent about which Victorian buildings are covered in combustible cladding, despite arson fears, federal minister says.


Melbourne weather: Victoria could endure month’s worth of rain in a single day

Victoria could get drenched with more than a month’s worth of rain in a single day.


New Vic MP attacks Greens [$]

In his maiden speech, Clifford Hayes claimed the “population question” must be addressed before climate change.


New South Wales

Curfews create delays, pollution [$]

Sydney Airport’s nightly curfew and cap on flight movements are making the airport less efficient and noisier.



Queensland floods unlikely to aid Murray-Darling Basin waterways

Record rainfall in northern Queensland is unlikely to make its way into the Murray-Darling Basin to replenish thirsty waterways, according to officials, with Lake Eyre most likely to benefit.


Explainer: How did the Ross River Dam reach more than 200 per cent capacity?

The unprecedented rain event in Townsville causes the north Queensland city’s Ross River Dam to reach more than 200 per cent capacity, but how is this possible?


Zali Steggall says Labor needs to commit to stopping Adani coalmine

Independent challenging Tony Abbott says Shorten’s climate change policy isn’t ‘ambitious enough’


Interstate trucks dumping rubbish would stretch from Brisbane to Mackay

The amount of trash dumped in Queensland from interstate has reached a staggering rubbish record.


Labor questions selection of sports company for south-east Queensland roads report

Brisbane lord mayor Graham Quirk has faced questions from Labor councillors over the choice of a French sports consultancy by the Council of Mayors for South-East Queensland to compile a $62 billion infrastructure plan.


Elliott Green Power opens Susan River solar farm, two more being built

Elliott Green Power formally opens Susan River solar farm, the 20th large-scale renewable energy project to come online in Queensland in the last two years.


No mine ban on my watch: Bowen [$]

Labor would allow the Adani mine to proceed, Chris Bowen says, because blocking it would raise concerns of sovereign risk.


Real reason the zipline will be built [$]

Mike O’Connor

We’re told the controversial Mt Coot-tha zipline will bring hordes of international tourists to Brisbane, but there’s another reason City Hall is backing it so vehemently.


Queensland’s floods are so huge the only way to track them is from space

Linlin Ge

The flood zone around Townsville extends for hundreds of kilometres, making monitoring difficult even from the air. But scientists are testing a new satellite method that can peer through the clouds.


South Australia

Speirs at odds with CE over Environment Department restructure

Environment Minister David Speirs has backed away from his chief executive’s decree that the state department is fundamentally “an economic development agency”, conceding “the environment should come first and foremost”.


SA regatta rides on environmental flows [$]

South Australian river operators are holding back $3.2 billion of environmental flows to the Coorong and Murray Mouth to maintain Lake Alexandrina water levels for yachting regattas and holiday makers.


SA response on environmental flows still as clear as mud [$]

Peter Hunt

Repeated investigations, audits and research reports have shown the South Australian Government is misusing $3.2 billion of environmental water recovered from southern NSW and Victoria.


20,000 trees to combat rising temperatures [$]

Nearly 20,000 trees have been planted in Adelaide’s south over the past two years to help cool the region.


Regional transport guarantees a life-changing issue [$]

Transport Public transport reliability may be a growing headache in the city but in the bush it can be the difference between life and death, or a vital link to work and education. And regional communities agree it has a long way to go.


Get rail back on track or we’re totally trucked [$]

Thousands of extra trucks will be needed in SA’s west if something is not done to fix the region’s railways amid fears grain freight could be about to hit the road.


SAGE Automation: New opportunities in war on waste [$]

Australia’s war on waste is creating new opportunities for SA technology and engineering companies Sage Automation and Container Disposal Systems.


Minister in hot seat over Murray water deal [$]

Environment Minister David Speirs’ handling of the Murray Darling Basin Plan – and whether he has broken the law by criticising a royal commissioner – could be probed by State Parliament.


Sorry minister, Mother Nature doesn’t do compromise

Craig Wilkins

Compromise might by the soul of politics, but the needs of our threatened environment – from Kangaroo Island to the River Murray – must come first.


Rain not enough to douse Tasmanian fires

Rain is tipped to fall in Tasmania this week, to firefighters’ relief, but communities are being told to stay alert as it won’t be enough to put out the blazes.


Almost 200,000 hectares of land burnt out since Tasmanian fire crisis started

Hundreds of local, interstate and overseas firefighters are still battling blazes in Tasmania as the state’s bushfire crisis enters its sixth week.


Delicate and rare egg transfer for weedy sea dragons achieved at Seahorse World

Chris Carey describes it as the “holy grail” of breeding Australian sea creatures in captivity – achieving the successful egg transfer for weedy sea dragons.


How will Waratah cope when the reservoir is de-commissioned by TasWater … ?

Judith Lello

The fire protection afforded to Waratah directly by the Waratah Reservoir’s water body physically being there cannot be underestimated, with 55 Ha of waterbody, spanning 2 kms long and 2 kms wide.


Scientists in race to save ‘underwater forest’ off Tasmanian coast

Tasmania has lost 95 per cent of its giant kelp in the past few decades, but researchers hope a new study could help restore it.


Western Australia

Perth expected to swelter in heatwave

For the first time since January 2014, the State’s capital is expected to hit 35C or more on five consecutive days.



Five simple ways to use indoor plants to cool down your home

It’s all well and good to keep thirsty houseplants well-watered in the current warm spell, but open a window too, before you and your plant get uncomfortably hot under the collar.


The plastics issue we seem to ignore

Giant petrochemical companies have announced a wealthy alliance to tackle plastic pollution. But there’s little talk of scaling back production to help the environment.


Trump uranium quota could shutter nuclear plants, trade group warns

The Nuclear Energy Institute warns that a 25 percent quota on domestic uranium would send prices soaring and force nuclear plants offline.


Africa embraces an $8 billion solar market for going off-grid

From Kenya and Tanzania to Nigeria and Ivory Coast, off-grid African communities are embracing solar energy.


The world might actually run out of people

The United Nations predicts that the global population will soon explode. In Empty Planet, John Ibbitson and Darrell Bricker argue they’re dead wrong.


Plastic is for burning!

Wastes to energy incineration is the choice of an increasing number of our world’s cities, especially where land is in short supply. Our world needs plastic.

Environment – Ken Calvert


Nature Conservation

Ramped up efforts needed to protect the world’s inland waters

Surface water protection is well below global targets in over half of the world’s countries, according to a new study from the Joint Research Centre, the European Commission’s science and knowledge service.


Leaves Are Nature’s Most Sophisticated Environment Sensors

New research confirms that leaves are nature’s most sophisticated environment sensors. We can therefore use leaves to tell us about the management of the land they are growing in.


Our ‘bee-eye camera’ helps us support bees, grow food and protect the environment

Adrian Dyer and Tanya Latty

Bees need flowers to live, and we need bees to pollinate our crops. Understanding bee vision can help us better support our buzzy friends and the critical pollination services they provide.


Now for something completely different …

$17 an hour is ok: Airports aren’t gouging us over parking, review finds

Australia’s largest airports aren’t ripping off the airlines who use their runways or the travellers who pay to park near their terminals, says the Productivity Commission.



Maelor Himbury

6 Florence St Niddrie 3042