Daily Links May 27

The recently rehabilitated plane-flying property buying ex-Minister for Health Sussan Ley, accountant and numerologist (hence the extra ‘S’ in her first name), is Minister for the Environment. Trevor Evans, economist and ex-ACCC and ex-CEO of the National Retail Association, is Assistant Minister for Waste Reducation and Environmental Management. Gus Taylor, economist, is Minister for Energy with responsibility for emissions reduction. No greenies in this lot and the jury is out.

Post of the Day

Comic: how to have better arguments about the environment (or anything else)

Jutta Beher et al

The only way to resolve intractable conflicts is to overcome desire to talk to allies more often than opponents. Here, a social psychologist, two ecologists and a cartoonist explain the toolbox of communication we need to resolve difficult issues.


Today’s Celebration

Abolition of Slavery – Guadeloupe

Mother’s Day – Bolivia

Children’s Day – Nigeria

National Heroes Day – Turks and Caicos Islands

Memorial Day – USA

Bike Day – Canada

Libraries Day – Russia, Kyrgyzstan

51st Anniversary of referendum to grant citizen rights to

Indigenous Australians (1967)

Spinal Health Week

Week of Solidarity with the Peoples of Non-Self-Governing Territories

Food Allergy Week

Macular Degeneration Awareness Week

National Reconciliation Week

More about May 27


Climate Change

South Africa finally makes carbon tax law

South Africa’s long-delayed carbon tax has been enshrined in law, the treasury says, as one of the continent’s worst polluters transitions to lower emissions in its efforts to meet agreements on global climate change.


A fight for the future as climate change school strikes grow for fourth month running

An estimated 4,000 teenagers and young people turn out in Manchester – and another 1.5m around the world – to demand they inherit a planet that is not dying.


Biden under pressure from environmentalists on climate plan

Former Vice President Joe Biden is expected to unveil his climate change plan any day now, and he’s under increasing pressure from environmentalists who want him to take a strong position against fossil fuels.


Carbon dioxide soars to record-breaking levels not seen in 800,000 years

There is more carbon dioxide in the atmosphere than there has been for 800,000 years — since before our species evolved.


4 reasons people fear science

Marshall Shepherd

As a climate scientist, I often hear statements like it is blasphemous to think humankind can alter weather or climate. I quickly point out air pollution, destruction of the Ozone Hole by chemical products, urban heat islands, and so on.



Scott Morrison reveals new-look ministry with historic Indigenous appointment

West Australian MP Ken Wyatt has made history as the first Indigenous Australian to be appointed Indigenous Affairs Minister.


Climate and energy back together [$]

Scott Morrison has reunited climate change and energy in a reshuffle that reflects his authority.


‘Caring about price and not quality’: Insiders say Australia’s obsession with cheap solar is derailing the market

Rooftop solar industry veterans say Australia has become a dumping ground for poor-quality solar products and some are questioning the regulatory oversight of household rooftop solar installers and products.


EnergyAustralia poised for $1b power generation revamp

A new gas power stations and two pumped hydro projects are needed to ensure affordable prices for customers, head of retail Mark Collette said.


Australian snake myth busted

A CSIRO scientist says the idea that Australia is the home of the world’s most deadliest snakes is largely a myth.


Grass-eating shark forces scientific rethink on coastal marine areas

The discovery of a shark that eats grass has highlighted Australian scientists’ efforts to reassess their preconceptions about which animals use our coastal marine areas.


Concerns over use of herpes virus in National Carp Control Plan

Australian aquatic ecologists say the National Carp Control Plan falls short on safety and efficacy as the deadline for advice to Federal Government approaches.


Made in Australia: Our rubbish lobs in Java’s backyard [$]

It takes only seconds of picking through the wasteland of imported rubbish that blankets whole villages and former farmland in Indonesias East Java to spot Australia’s contribution.


BHP’s automated truck drive [$]

BHP is quietly working on plans that could see a massive ­accele­ration of the rollout of automated trucks.


Coal ships waiting off China

Eight ships with Australian thermal coal are waiting off the coast of China to unload.


Re-elected Morrison Government environment and energy ministers face big challenges

ACF media release

ACF congratulates Sussan Ley and Angus Taylor on being appointed as ministers in the important environment and energy portfolios.


Industry congratulates Energy and Emissions Reduction Minister on appointment

AEC media release

The Australian Energy Council congratulates the Hon Angus Taylor MP on his appointment as Federal Energy and Emissions Reduction Minister.


Torres Strait Islanders ask UN to hold Australia to account on climate ‘human rights abuses’

Kristen Lyons

Climate change threatens Australia in many different ways, and can devastate rural and urban communities alike. For Torres Strait Islanders, it’s a crisis that’s washing away their homes, infrastructure and even cemeteries.


If our PM won’t tackle climate change, I guess I’ll have to [$]

Darren Levin

As a product of the slacker ‘90s generation, I’d rather the Earth be subsumed by rising sea levels than be told what to do, writes Darren Levin. But Prime Minister Scott Morrison has changed all that.



What should Australia do with its old coal mines? This UK charity has a wild idea

UK-based charity the Eden Project has released its vision for a disused coal mine near Victoria’s Great Ocean Road. They plan to transform it into a $150 million eco-tourism attraction — a celebration of the natural environment on what is now a barren site.


Dodgy power companies to meet their match, says Labor

The state budget is to fund an energy ”cop on the beat” to crack down on rogue power companies.


New South Wales

Scientists warn lucrative tree-planting program does more harm than good

A regeneration project is underway at NSW’s Capertee National Park and environmentalists say the volume of trees is boosting State Government coffers but could threaten native plants and species.


Sydney’s driverless Metro train line opens, but the doors don’t

Australia’s first driverless train network took off in Sydney today, but cheers turned to frowns as the doors failed to open at one point and the driverless train overshot the platform a couple of times, causing delays.


Sydney has a heritage-listed sewer. It has set off a storm with developers

Local councils and the state government have been accused of offering heritage protection to “bizarre” items such as stormwater drains, laneway paving and the footings of a former transmission tower.


Santos tells NSW govt it wants a timeline

Santos is pushing the NSW government to follow Queensland and set an approvals timeline for its proposed Narrabri coal seam gas project.


Are these dolphins happy living in a marine animal park? An expert plans to find out


A world-leading scientist studies the welfare of dolphins at a NSW tourist attraction to work out if the animals would be happier in their pools or in an ocean pen.


‘Something different to the heartache’: Menindee locals hope festival marks start of brighter future

Amid “horrific” events including mass fish kills and the ongoing drought, residents of Menindee in outback NSW relax at a festival and hope it will be the first of many positive things to draw tourists back to the region.



Lake Tuggeranong businesses affected by blue-green algae plague

Businesses reliant on Lake Tuggeranong’s attraction have been left by the wayside because of blue-green algae infestations, prompting calls for researchers’ findings to be implemented urgently.


The areas in Canberra flagged for intense urban infill

Ninety per cent of future urban infill could come from eight areas across Canberra, ACT government documents suggest.



Qld landholders warned of massive fines over ‘exempt’ land clearing

Landholders who assumed swathes of Queensland could be cleared without the need for council permission could face prosecution after a far-reaching court ruling.


New CSG no-go zone aimed to quarantine contaminated Queensland groundwater

The risk of spreading toxic groundwater from one of Queensland’s worst environmental contaminations prompts a ban on coal seam gas drilling in an area where companies are already extracting gas.


Hundreds stage ‘die-in’ at Queensland Museum

About 250 environmental activists have lain down among the dinosaurs at the Queensland Museum in the first large Extinction Rebellion event in Brisbane.


Brisbane’s ‘ugliest building’ to go as bus and rail moves underground

Brisbane buses will follow trains underground at Roma Street Station as the government forges ahead with Cross River Rail plans, without the federal help it hoped to get from a Shorten Labor government.


Taylor to fast-track QLD coal plant [$]

Plans for a new lower emissions coal plant in Queensland will be fast-tracked by Energy Minister Angus Taylor.


Battle brewing over mining ban [$]

Traditional owners are divided over a Queensland government plan to ban mining on Cape York.


Adani is an environmental health risk we can’t afford

Ariane Wilkinson

It would be a sensible and fair measure for the Queensland government to fix the law so the Adani Group’s track record is properly scrutinised. Currently there has been no accountability for their past actions and no proper scrutiny of their suitability to operate in Queensland.


Dear Melbourne, we need to talk…

Margaret Strelow

We need to talk about our relationship and how things have been between us lately.


Labor’s sneaky strategy [$]

Gerhardt Pearson

Labor is conning traditional landowners into giving up mining rights — in perpetuity.


‘We don’t want too many people coming here’: Tree changers finding ‘paradise’

St Marys on Tasmania’s north-east coast has attracted tree changers looking for the “real Australia” away from the bustling capital cities, and many residents expect the interest to intensify.


What’s at stake in Tasmanian Aboriginal naming policy debate? Groups argue case as policy release approaches

The Tasmanian government is expected to release its final Aboriginal and Dual Naming Policy next month, placing it on a collision course with the Tasmanian Aboriginal Centre.


Seabird plastic consumption underestimated, study finds

Scientists at the University of Tasmania have discovered a new method to separate plastic from the stomachs of seabirds that suggests the consumption levels and impacts previously reported have been underestimated.


Northern Territory



Western Australia

‘People just don’t know what to do’: Concern injured wildlife is being left to suffer on country roads

It’s a common sight on Australia’s country roads: a kangaroo carcass dragged to the verge after being hit by a car. But a wildlife carer is concerned drivers don’t know what to do with injured wildlife.


Putting the Kimberley on the map: Direct Melbourne to Kununurra flights

The flights are set to start on May 2020, linking east coast travellers to WA’s Kimberley region in an Australia-first.


‘Short-sighted’: MP vows to block bid to erase Roe 8

The Roe 8 highway extension has been thrown a lifeline by an Upper House crossbencher who plans to block a State Government bid to erase the polarising project from future planning schemes.


Gina Rinehart offers Fitzroy Valley land swap for water

Iron ore magnate Gina Rinehart could hand over tens of thousands of hectares of pastoral land in the Fitzroy Valley to the State Government so it can develop a national park, as part of a $285 million plan to supercharge growth in the Kimberley cattle industry and create hundreds of jobs in the region.


New crisis for Australian resources industry [$]

Jennifer Hewett

The West Australian resources industry is under renewed attack from the environmental watchdog and looking to governments for immediate answers.



Feel guilty about leaving work early? Do it for the planet

Time off isn’t so much a luxury, new research argues, as an urgent necessity.


7 reasons you may want to become a vegetarian

Here are seven more reasons you might want to become a vegetarian – or at least move a little in that direction.


Report: Louisiana coastal residents agree they face ‘existential’ crisis

“We must accept that some areas of Louisiana cannot be preserved as is.”


Comic: how to have better arguments about the environment (or anything else)

Jutta Beher et al

The only way to resolve intractable conflicts is to overcome desire to talk to allies more often than opponents. Here, a social psychologist, two ecologists and a cartoonist explain the toolbox of communication we need to resolve difficult issues.


Nature Conservation

What Congress can do to save our national parks

Donna Edwards

If the park service had a homeowners’ association, it would be racking up violations.

Now for something completely different …

Why humanity is destined to be irrational

If democracy in Australia, Europe and America seems a little unhinged at the moment, could it be because irrationality is coded into the DNA of Western civilisation? Quite possibly, according to one philosopher — and technology alone won’t save us.




Maelor Himbury

6 Florence St Niddrie 3042