Daily Links Nov 8

Angus ‘Fantastic’ Taylor was a Rhodes Scholar. Political opportunism trumps intelligence, it seems.

Post of the Day

Australia’s drought relief package hits the political spot but misses the bigger point

Lin Crase

The question in drought relief is this: do we want more or fewer people to be involved in a farming activity that is vulnerable to drought?


Today’s Celebration

Days of History and Memory – Kyrgyzstan

National Aboriginal Veterans Day – Canada

Pohnpei Constitution Day – Micronesia

Intersex Day of Remembrance

World Urbanism Day

International Day of Radiology

World Day Without Wi-Fi

Guinness World Records Day

More about Nov 8


Climate Change

‘This is our nuclear moment’: Jacinda Ardern leads New Zealand to pass climate change law

Jacinda Ardern’s coalition government has delivered its flagship climate policy, passing the Zero Carbon Bill through the New Zealand parliament.


Banking giant HSBC gives shocking warning of US$10 trillion a year climate health bill

HSBC issues shocking assessment of a world impacted by climate change, predicting the health costs of the world’s fastest-growing economies could reach almost A$15 trillion a year by 2050.


France puts climate at heart of any FTA with Europe [$]

French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian says any trade agreement between the EU and Australia must include real action on climate change.


Plants and fungi together could slow climate change

A new global assessment shows that human impacts have greatly reduced plant-fungus symbioses, which play a key role in sequestering carbon in soils. Restoring these ecosystems could be one strategy to slow climate change.


Carbon dioxide capture and use could become big business

Capturing carbon dioxide and turning it into commercial products, such as fuels or construction materials, could become a new global industry, according to a new study.



Scott Morrison’s waste export ban doomed to fail, environment ministers warned

Groups say hundreds of millions of dollars in funding required along with stipulation public agencies use recycled material


Drought to become more frequent and severe due to climate change – government report

Report advises Australia to maintain drought preparations, even in times of normal rainfall


BHP says coal lobby links can foster change as investor rebellion builds

BHP chairman Ken MacKenzie says environmental activists should applaud the miner’s industry-leading climate policies, as nearly one in three investors called for the company to cut its links with so-called pro-coal lobby groups.


Expert emissions panel stacked in Angus Taylor’s favour

A panel of experts assembled to help with emissions reductions is led by those in favour of fossil fuels.


Fake Halloween cobwebs and plastic appearing in birds’ nests

Fake Halloween cobwebs are being found in birds’ nests more than a week after Halloween, but it’s unclear how dangerous that can be.


What will it take for Australian auto industry to admit EVs affecting fossil car sales?

Giles Parkinson

Slump in new sales of petrol and diesel vehicles in Australia continues, with sales down again in October with the exception of hybrid and electric vehicles, which have risen…


Where will all the rubbish go when exporting it is banned? Here is one solution

Phil Lasker and Jenya Goloubeva

With a ban on exporting rubbish on the cards, the Australian recycling industry could soon be forced to process more material locally. But requiring industry to produce recycled packaging is just the first step


Loud environmental protests are a great Australian tradition

SMH editorial

The Prime Minister’s threat to outlaw certain forms of protest would be a dangerous move for Australian democracy.


Australia’s drought relief package hits the political spot but misses the bigger point

Lin Crase

The question in drought relief is this: do we want more or fewer people to be involved in a farming activity that is vulnerable to drought?


Another damaging drought package passes with no scrutiny [$]

Bernard Keane

The profound flaws of giving handouts to drought-stricken farmers are well known. But little scrutiny is applied to the government’s drought packages.


Chris Uhlmann’s intellectual well runs dry [$]

Guy Rundle

Chris Uhlmann has compared the global climate movement to a “hard-core religious cult”. But the former seminarian and ABC political editor is tilting at windmills.


Dramatic changes point to smarter use of energy

Rob Murray-Leach

For decades, experts have said how we use energy is just as important as how we generate it. For decades, Australia has ignored the opportunities of energy efficiency.


Renewables continue to boom, but what’s going on with power prices?

David Leitch

Renewable energy is growing rapidly, but the futures market in particular is yet to take into account the big pipeline of wind and solar about to join the grid.


Climate change a boardroom issue [$]

Richard Gluyas

The climate war in Canberra has triggered a permanent state of alert in the financial services industry.



‘Totally unfair’ plan to phase out native logging criticised by regional towns

Victorian timber workers worry their communities will become ghost towns after the Victorian Government announces it will phase out native forest logging over the next decade.


Logging off: ‘Hard landing’ for workers in the woods

Premier Daniel Andrews’ ‘hard landing’ will change Victoria’s timber industry forever.


Council statement: native forest timber industry

Yarra Ranges Council is raising concerns about impacts on community members, in light of the State Government’s announcement that native forest timber harvesting will end by 2030 and that supply to timber mills be substantially reduced from 2024.


Water investors described as ‘leeches and parasites’ in heated public forum

Fruit growers in Victoria’s north-western corner tell the ACCC that the Murray-Darling Basin water market has become so complex that understanding its intricacies has become a full-time job.


Solar and battery offered as “standard” in Victoria new-build housing project

CEFC-backed scheme to offer solar and battery storage as standard features in some off-the-plan townhouses being built by property developer Mirvac.


EPA slams group for stockpiling waste [$]

A recycling group has come under fire from the EPA after they were found to have stockpiled contaminated waste from an exclusive South Yarra development at a clean fill site.


Djab Wurrung people have been failed and betrayed at every turn [$]

Lidia Thorpe

For months, the traditional owners of Djab Wurrung land have faced a battle on multiple fronts to be heard on the issue of the Western Highway and the destruction of sacred trees.


New South Wales

‘Instagrammable’ glamping plan for national park enrages the people who’re paying for it

A taxpayer-funded plan to commercialise parts of a NSW national park, which would lead to some areas becoming off-limits to casual users, has infuriated locals, businesses and bushwalking groups.


Bushfire threat eases across NSW ahead of worsening conditions

Firefighters will work through the night to battle multiple out-of-control bushfires burning in the northern part of NSW, with conditions predicted to deteriorate further on Friday.


Sydney Uni students face ‘longer travel times’ on new metro line

Sydney University has warned that converting an existing rail line through the city’s south-west to run single-deck metro trains will lead to journey times for thousands of students and staff travelling to its Camperdown campus increasing by about 15 minutes.



Hot, dry, windy conditions to keep Queensland firefighters on edge

Temperatures are set to soar 6-10 degrees above average on Friday as fires banned across much of the south-east.


Queensland coal seam gas shortfall threatening LNG exports, says Rystad [$]

Queensland gas producers may be forced to cut exports from its $84 billion LNG industry and shut down production units in the next decade due to falling coal seam gas production in the state, consultancy Rystad Energy has warned.


Horror headlines killing tourism [$]

As Queensland again makes the news for all the wrong reasons we take an in-depth look at exactly what our options are in regards to stopping shark attacks.


South Australia

Explainer: How will the revival of Adelaide’s desalination plant help drought-stricken farmers?

Adelaide’s little-used desalination plant will be cranked up as part of a deal to provide relief to drought-ravaged farmers in the eastern states. Here’s how the plan will work.


Majority of Kimba locals support nuclear waste dump

A clear majority of Kimba residents vote in favour of a nuclear waste dump being built in their region.


Live-streaming of osprey chicks in their nest, part of a plan to help save their species

Two osprey chicks are now live-streaming from their barge-nest in Port Lincoln. They will then be tracked after they fledge in December.


Murray River water destined for Adelaide reallocated to drought-hit farmers upstream

Murray River water destined for Adelaide will be reallocated to farmers upstream so they can grow feed for their livestock, as part of a federal drought stimulus package announced today.


Controversial wire fence splits peninsula to keep native animals in, pests out

It’s hoped a 25-kilometre wire fence bisecting the Yorke Peninsula will keep feral pests out and native wildlife in — but farmers are not convinced.


White elephant no more: Feds will pay SA to fire up desal plant

Adelaide’s little-utilised desalination plant will be activated as part of the Federal Government’s drought relief package, with 100 gigalitres of Murray River water to be diverted to help struggling farmers.


Uni of Adelaide battery technology could slash electric vehicle cost

New battery technology that could significantly reduce the price of electric cars and home battery systems takes major step towards commercialisation.


This solar farm has to switch off every second day due to negative prices

When Australia’s renewable energy portfolio reached its important milestone on Wednesday of providing 50 per cent of the main grid’s demand for the first time, one solar farm couldn’t be part of the fun, and had to look on from the sidelines.


SA Labor against ban on fracking [$]

Labor’s divided position on fracking has been ­underscored with the South Australian opposition calling on the Marshall Liberal government to axe its 10-year moratorium on unconventional gas exploration in the state’s southeast.


Northern Territory

Tollner and Hale agree: ‘Give parks back to NT’

Two former Territory federal members from opposite sides of politics have called on the Federal Government to hand back national parks in the Territory in the wake of public outcry over the decision to increase fees to Uluru.


Western Australia

Scorching November weekend to hit 40C for just the fourth time on Perth records

Fire authorities prepare for a challenging weekend as scorching temperatures and gusty winds create dangerous fire conditions in WA’s south, including Perth which is set to hit 40 degrees on Saturday.


Developer ‘far from discouraged’ after Shire win in bid to stop Mandurah marina

A little shire south of Perth has won a big victory in a community fight to stop an overseas-listed company building a 300-berth marina in the heart of the Mandurah Estuary.



Geoscientists hope to make induced earthquakes predictable

Geoscientists have created a model to forecast induced earthquake activity from the disposal of wastewater after oil and gas production.


Go with the flow: Scientists design new grid batteries for renewable energy

Scientists have designed an affordable ‘flow battery’ membrane that could accelerate renewable energy for the electrical grid.


Simulated sunlight reveals how 98% of plastics at sea go missing each year

Study explores removal mechanisms, microbial impacts and lifetimes of select microplastics on the ocean surface


Huge gaps in research on microplastics in North America

Amid increasing concern about the effects of plastic pollution on marine ecosystems, a new study found that North America is lagging behind other continents when it comes to understanding the potential risks that microplastics and associated pollutants pose to both fisheries and the humans that consume the seafood.


Combatting air pollution with nature

Air pollution is composed of particles and gases that can have negative impacts on both the environment and human health. Technologies to mitigate pollution have become widespread in recent years, but scientists are now exploring a new, pared-down approach: using nature to restore ecological balance.


Investigation of oceanic ‘black carbon’ uncovers mystery in global carbon cycle

New technique unexpectedly finds that black carbon in rivers and oceans differs significantly


UK needs to act to prevent electric vehicle battery waste mountain

Recycling technologies for end-of-life lithium ion batteries (LIBs) are not keeping pace with the rapid rise of electric vehicles, storing up a potentially huge waste management problem for the future, according to a new study.


Four visions for the future of public transport

Marcus Enoch

A whole range of social and technological changes could revolutionise how we travel in the coming decades.


Nature Conservation

Researcher surveys pond ecosystems, just by listening

A researcher in the UK is surveying freshwater ecosystems, such as ponds and lakes, just by listening to them. University of Bristol researcher Jack Greenhalgh hopes to create an audio reference library of freshwater species.


Melting Arctic sea ice linked to emergence of deadly virus in marine mammals

Loss of ice opens pathways for disease transmission among sea lions, ice seals, sea otters and others


‘We want the world to pay attention’: World’s largest tropical wetland is ablaze

It’s not just the Amazon that has been burning in Brazil. The world’s largest tropical wetlands, the Pantanal, are ablaze and the fire shows no signs of stopping as it burns them to ashes.


Oil spill threatens vast areas of mangroves and coral reefs in Brazil

Pollution stretches across 2,400km of coastline, with scientists fearing contamination of food chain




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