Daily Links May 23

Angus ‘Fantastic’ Taylor is indeed fantastic. There was his Eastern Australia Agriculture Cayman Islands adventure in the $80 million dollar sale of non-existent water to the government of which he is a member. Then came the Jam Land poisoning of threatened grasslands discussed in this article. And apart from the federal fuzz, who could forget his dodgy document alleging hypocrisy against Sydney Mayor Clover Moore, a political rival to his wife for the next mayoralty. For mere mortals, just one of these would be enough for a trip to the gulag. Clearly Gus is no mere mortal!

Post of the Day

What will it take to cool the planet?

Bill McKibben

New data suggest that a great percentage of our emissions trouble is hardwired into our systems, and not solely a function of our habits and choices.


On This Day

May 23

Declaration of the Bab – Baha’i


Ecological Observance

World Turtle Day


Coronavirus Watch

Confirmed cases: 7,095. Deaths: 101


7 questions answered on how to socialise safely as coronavirus restrictions ease

You’re heading to your first post-COVID-19 dinner party. How many guests is too many? Are hugging and handshakes OK now? And most importantly, should you bring your own cutlery?


People in other countries have been told to wear masks. Why haven’t Australians?

Some countries encourage the use of face masks in public to prevent the spread of coronavirus. Others even enforce it. So why don’t most people in Australia need them?


7 things to take with you from this pandemic

Kara Martin

Lockdown lessons worth keeping


Climate Change

‘Expect more’: Climate change raises risk of dam failures

Engineers say most dams in the United States, designed decades ago, are unsuited to a warmer world and stronger storms.


Young climate activists call for EU to radically reform farming sector

Fridays for Future to publish letter urging reform of common agricultural policy ahead of European commission meeting.


Trump wants stronger oversight on China, except when it comes to climate change

There is a critically important role for independent international oversight on the self-reporting of another country on a problem that threatens the U.S. and the world – climate change.


The climate ‘hot 10 songs’

A keen ear could hear the theme of global warming starting to swell in popular music all across the dial in the last two decades as global temperatures started to rise.


What will it take to cool the planet?

Bill McKibben

New data suggest that a great percentage of our emissions trouble is hardwired into our systems, and not solely a function of our habits and choices.



Morrison’s lack of transparency is undermining green recovery, MPs say

Labor, Greens and Independent MPs called for transparency around federal government’s economic response to Covid-19, as it looks set to embrace fossil fuels at expense of green recovery.


Carbon road map winning few friends, little influence

Experts says Australia’s climate roadmap has no clear targets or policy and is not a strategy.


Miners confident on China coal demand as import threat looms

Mining and government leaders are confident that Chinese demand for high-quality Australian coal will remain strong despite the threat of import curbs.


Australia’s water policy to be examined in new inquiry

Federal Treasurer Josh Frydenberg has announced a new Productivity Commission inquiry into Australia’s water policy.


Endangered shorebirds unsustainably hunted during migrations, records show

More than 30 species, including nine that are threatened, are being hunted unsustainably, report finds


Australia’s energy policy: a roadmap without a destination – Australian politics live podcast

Guardian Australia’s environment editor, Adam Morton, joins political editor, Katharine Murphy, to discuss the week’s news on energy policy. From the release of the government’s technology roadmap to a leaked document that sees gas as the future of Australian energy, why is Australia making a roadmap without a destination?


Coalition’s Technology Investment Roadmap: Poor policy in practice

David Leitch

Picking winners and playing favourites has always been poor policy, but the technology roadmap shows us that this is what the Morrison government intends to do.


Off-river pumped hydro could provide lower costs for energy storage

Andrew Blakers And Matthew Stocks

Off river pumped hydro sites using old mines or reservoirs are likely to deliver lower cost energy storage than other pumped hydro options.


Federal government’s technology roadmap is a path we’ve already trodden

Tristan Edis

On Thursday the government released its Technology Investment Roadmap. According to Minister for Energy and Emission Reductions Angus Taylor, this will be the cornerstone of Australia’s long-term emissions reduction strategy.


Emissions debate goes from inane to ridiculous [$]

Terry McCrann

I give it to Business Council of Australia CEO Jennifer Westacott over Angus Taylor, the Minister for “Energy and Emissions Reduction” — four words, by the by, that capture everything that is so hopelessly and destructively wrong about government in general in the 21st century and this Morrison government more and very specifically.


A pretty good start but room for improvement: 3 experts rate Australia’s emissions technology plan

Jake Whitehead; Chris Greig, and Simon Smart

The long-awaited paper sets a positive tone. But it’s not clear if the government grasps the sheer scale or urgency of the emissions reduction task.


Losing our way [$]

Saturday Paper editorial

“This is all about balance,” Angus Taylor says of his long-awaited technology investment road map. In reality, it is all about delay, and distraction.



Environmental watchdog failed to properly monitor dangerous chemicals across Victoria, report finds

A scathing report finds Victoria’s pollution watchdog had “unacceptable” practices that failed to properly track dangerous chemicals and hazardous waste across the state.


Environmental values at heart of Warburton Mountain Bike Trails

Environmental values will be at the heart of an Environmental Effects Statement (EES) Yarra Ranges Council is developing in an effort to help understand and manage any potential environmental risks associated with the Warburton Mountain Bike Destination.


Hazelwood power station to be demolished

Victoria’s defunct Hazelwood Power Station is about to be demolished, with site owner Engie assuring locals that asbestos inside its chimneys will not be a threat.


How cheap energy will kickstart Victorian manufacturing [$]

Victoria is in talks for an energy deal which could slash prices and kickstart the manufacturing sector. Take a look at how our first offshore wind farm could prevent summer blackouts.


Climb-ban bureaucrats in Victoria keen to extend their reach [$]

As the world has been focused on the pandemic, Parks Victoria has been quietly accelerating its curbs on climbing in the heartland of the pursuit in Australia.


New South Wales

Meridian proposes new wind and battery “energy park” for northern NSW

Meridian proposes to build a two-part 130MW wind plus battery storage project in NSW New England region, 40km south of Glen Innes.


Amazon to build new 105MW solar farm in NSW – its second in Australia

New 105MW Australian solar farm announced as part global roll-out as Amazon works to source renewables for 100% of its electricity needs by 2030.


Sydney 1.7MW rooftop solar “power station” switched on and playing both sides of meter

Epho Commercial Solar demonstrates how “tens of gigawatts” of potential for solar generation could be tapped from Australia’s industrial rooftops.


Company part-owned by Angus Taylor seeks ministerial review on illegal grassland clearing

Jam Land is appealing an environment department order to restore endangered native habitat found to have been poisoned


This is what the perfect post-COVID-19 world would look like

In Australia, it’s likely the population will be forever changed by the pandemic, and urban planners say we are ready to embrace change.



Green waste bins filling up in pandemic

The amount of green waste collected in household bins increased by almost 70 per cent between February and April, as Canberrans stuck at home during the coronavirus pandemic got busy in the garden.



Coroner lashes Queensland coal mine operator over death

An inquest into the death of an electrician while working underground at a central Queensland coal mine has found the mine’s record keeping to be “grossly deficient”.


Santos takes up the search for more gas as ‘plug-in’ opportunity

Santos will start the exploration of 2000 square kilometres of Queensland in the search for gas.


South Australia

Kitchen caddies to expand with $1.6 million program

More South Australian councils will be encouraged to roll out kitchen caddies – that help get food scraps out of landfill and into green bins – with a new $1.6 million grant program, as waste spikes during lockdown.



Australia’s research ship checking Hobart air quality amid coronavirus shutdown

What does a hi-tech, $120 million research ship do while it’s stuck in port during a coronavirus lockdown? The RV Investigator is using its sophisticated equipment to check the air around Hobart.



New emission norms: 70 per cent of India’s coal-fired power plants won’t meet 2022 deadline, report says

Besides being accountable for emissions of pollutants like SO2, the sector is also extremely water-intensive – it is responsible for 70% of total freshwater withdrawal by all industries in the country.


Young climate activists call for EU to radically reform farming sector

Fridays for Future to publish letter urging reform of common agricultural policy ahead of European commission meeting


Up to 220 million people may be at risk of arsenic-contaminated water

A new world map highlights possible hot spots of arsenic contamination in groundwater.


UK renewable energy may be switched off as demand plummets

National Grid may ask suppliers to stop generating electricity due to record low consumption

How dangerous is low-level radiation to children?

A rethink on the risks of low-level radiation would imperil the nuclear industry’s future − perhaps why there’s never been one.


The coronavirus and a world without meat

Jonathan Safran Foer

If you care about the working poor, about racial justice, and about climate change, you have to stop eating animals.

Why India’s coal reforms matter

Saurabh Bhatnagar

Constant update of sectoral reforms in line with the market to attract investment to add to India’s GDP through this sector and save precious foreign exchange are welcome.


Nature Conservation

Microplastic pollution in oceans vastly underestimated – study

Particles may outnumber zooplankton, which underpin marine life and regulate climate


Pollution: Birds ‘ingesting hundreds of bits of plastic a day’

Plastic pollutants in UK rivers are finding their way into wildlife and moving up the food chain.


WWF: Rainforest deforestation more than doubled under cover of coronavirus

Criminal groups are taking advantage of the pandemic and the unemployed are getting desperate, the WWF said.


Evidence that fish flourish in a community-managed marine area offers hope

Study authors say local communities are able to enforce restrictions because they feel a sense of ownership.

Maelor Himbury

6 Florence St Niddrie 3042



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