Daily Links Sep 10

Here’s the Central Victorian Greenhouse Alliance, a large group of Local Governments collaborating on climate response, leading the charge (pun not intended) on electric vehicle infrastructure. Fine work, Rob Law.


From: Maelor Himbury <maelor@melbpc.org.au>
Date: 10 September 2020 at 8:48:26 am AEST
Subject: Daily Links Sep 10

Post of the Day 

Trillions up in smoke: The staggering economic cost of climate change inaction 

Over the next 30 years, increasing economic damages from climate change will cost the Australian economy at least $1.89 trillion – or roughly 4 per cent of projected GDP each year – if current emissions policies are maintained. 


On This Day 

Sep 10 


Ecological Observance 

Alpaca Day 


Coronavirus Watch 

Confirmed cases: 26,465. Deaths: 781 


How sewage testing is helping Victoria detect coronavirus 

Victoria is testing sewage from across the state in an effort to find coronavirus traces that might have been missed in other testing. Here’s how it works. 


What went wrong with the Oxford vaccine and what happens next? 

A major vaccine trial is on hold but that shouldn’t be a surprise — it’s the way clinical trials work, writes our science editor. 


As ’emotional fatigue’ wears down many Australians, experts share tips to boost energy levels 

Anxiety, depression and poor sleep are all leading some people to feel as if they are in a state of perpetual jetlag during 2020, but experts say there are some small steps you can take to put a spring back in your step. 


Climate Change 

Climate change is affecting the Antarctic sponge ecosystem 

Stress factors caused by climate change like high temperatures and glacier melting impacts could severely affect the Antarctic sponge ecosystem. 


Senegal suburbs remain under water days after ‘exceptional rainfall’ 

Suburbs outside Dakar remained under water, three days after ‘exceptional rainfall’. In Keur Massar, a town just east of Dakar, cars were partly submerged while residents were seen walking knee deep in stagnant flood waters. 


Farmland submerged as severe floods hit Nigeria 

Farmlands were severely affected and thousands were displaced as severe rainfall caused flooding in Nigeria. An eyewitness captured a completely flooded rice farmland in Kebbi State where over 500,000 hectares were affected, according to local news reports. Kebbi is the country’s main rice-growing state, according to the Rice Farmers Association of Nigeria. 


Climate engineering: Modelling projections oversimplify risks 

Climate change is gaining prominence as a political and public priority. But many ambitious climate action plans foresee the use of climate engineering technologies whose risks are insufficiently understood. Researchers now describe how evolving modelling practices are trending towards ‘best-case’ projections. They warn that over-optimistic expectations of climate engineering may reinforce the inertia with which industry and politics have been addressing decarbonization. 


United in Science report: Climate Change has not stopped for COVID19 

This is according to a new multi-agency report from leading science organizations, United in Science 2020. It highlights the increasing and irreversible impacts of climate change, which affects glaciers, oceans, nature, economies and human living conditions and is often felt through water-related hazards like drought or flooding. It also documents how COVID-19 has impeded our ability to monitor these changes through the global observing system. 


New insight on the impacts of Earth’s biosphere on air quality 

A new study provides the first global satellite measurements of one of the most important chemicals affecting Earth’s atmosphere. 


Earth may temporarily pass dangerous 1.5 warming limit by 2024, major new report says 

Pep Canadell and Rob Jackson 

The Paris climate agreement seeks to limit global warming to 1.5 this century. A new report by the World Meteorological Organisation warns this limit may be exceeded by 2024 – and the risk is growing. 



Trillions up in smoke: The staggering economic cost of climate change inaction 

Over the next 30 years, increasing economic damages from climate change will cost the Australian economy at least $1.89 trillion – or roughly 4 per cent of projected GDP each year – if current emissions policies are maintained. 


Morrison willingly turning blind eye to clean energy, Labor says 

Anthony Albanese and Mark Butler say Morrison’s choice of gas over clean energy will lead to fewer new jobs. 


Graph of the Day: Australia’s best performing wind farms in August 

The best performing wind farms in Australia in August all had capacity factors of more than 50%, and all located in and around electorate of federal energy minister. 


How Australia’s ‘white gold’ could power the global electric vehicle revolution 

Miners and environmentalists have reached an uneasy truce over lithium – both agree Australia should be mining more of this key ingredient in renewable energy batteries 


AGL bets on electric vehicles subscription service to boost Australia’s uptake 

Energy company will provide car, charging station as well as insurance and registration for flat fee, as research points to upfront cost as deterrent 


Last season’s climate catastrophes cost insurers $5.4b 

A warming climate is increasing the risk of catastrophic bushfires, damaging hailstorms and powerful cyclones, the country’s biggest insurer says. 


Aussie bees could save us, and here’s how you can help them 

Native bees and other wild insects tend to get overlooked — but these amazing Australian animals could be instrumental in helping us feed a growing world population. 


Bushfire mitigation money left unspent as summer approaches 

A war of words has erupted over funding for natural disaster mitigation strategies, after Labor accused the government of being “negligent” for leaving money unspent, and the minister accusing his counterpart of ignoring consultation. 


French won’t fry us on carbon emissions and submarines [$] 

France’s ambassador to Australia, Christophe Penot, says the EU will not demand dramatic new climate change pledges from Australia in return for a new trade deal, revealing Europe only wants to see “a bit more” ambition from Australia. 


Senate to block bill for green tape cuts [$] 

Scott Morrison’s plan to speed the approval of major projects as part of the COVID-19 recovery faces delay, with key crossbenchers set to block legislation aimed at reducing green tape. 


Our dirty fuel is a bigger killer than COVID-19: how Australia fails on car emissions 

John Hewson  

The human and economic costs of vehicle pollution are horrifying. Our government has set standards that are too low. 


Water reforms a win for farmers and improved use [$] 

Australian editorial 

With the drought broken and weather agencies predicting La Nina conditions, which signal above average rainfall this summer, it is a good time to take stock of reform of the Murray-Darling Basin. 


There’s no spark of economic revival in this energy policy [$] 

Tony Wood 

Talk of a gas-led recovery or a renewables-led recovery is just likely to compound the existing energy mess. 



Victoria’s biggest solar farm starts sending power to grid after long delays 

The 256MW Kiamal solar farm – the biggest solar project in Victoria, and one of the most heavily delayed in the country – finally sending power to the grid. 


Latrobe Valley solar and battery project approved by Victoria planning minister 

A 75MW solar farm and big battery planned for near Toongabbie in Victoria will go ahead after being waved through the approvals process by the state government. 


Charging stations aim to drive electric vehicle take-up 

A new network of electric vehicle chargers will make it easier to drive long distances throughout Victoria. 


New South Wales 

Malabar to build 25MW solar farm on former coal mine in Hunter Valley 

Malabar Resources has won state government approval to build a 25MW solar farm on a former open cut coal mine in the Hunter Valley region of New South Wales. 


‘Quite solicitous’ mammals returned to NSW for first time in a century 

Crest-tailed mulgaras, small carnivorous marsupials related to the Tasmanian devil, are being re-introduced to the wilds of western NSW after being presumed extinct in the state for more than a century. 


Barilaro accused of ‘bullying’ NSW Premier as koala protection row escalates 

Four Nationals MPs threaten to plunge the NSW Government into minority, if the koala protection policy isn’t changed — with the support of party leader and Deputy Premier John Barilaro. 


‘Enjoy your short careers’: Liberal MP slams Nats over koalas [$] 

Upper House Liberal MP Catherine Cusack has destroyed two Nationals MPs in text messages sent on Wednesday night, calling them “backstab Nats” who will have “short careers”. 


Where have all the quandongs gone? Bush fruits that sell for up to $220 per kilo grow scarce 

Fans of the ‘native peach’ are coming up empty when foraging for wild fruit in western New South Wales. So where has the quandong gone? 



Rare ACT birds are being more regularly sighted in neighbourhoods 

Have you noticed more birds in your neighbourhood? Perhaps even species you have never noticed before? Bushfires, a warmer than average winter and a greater appreciation for wildlife could be reasons for this. 


Aerial culls to shoot brumbies in Namadgi given approval [$] 

Shooting from helicopters, passive trapping and “free range ground shooting” will be the three key methods used to prevent feral horses roaming across the NSW border into the ACT’s fire-ravaged Namadgi National Park. 


Labor recycling plant stance not linked to ACT election? Rubbish! [$] 

Dan Jervis-Bardy 

If the corflutes hadn’t given it away, or the burst of glorious spring weather, Labor’s newly formed opposition to a long-planned recycling plant in Fyshwick surely does. 



Audit office exposes flaws in Brisbane’s bushland purchasing program 

The Queensland Audit Office says there are risks that bushland that was not identified as needed for protection could be bought by Brisbane City Council. 


Queensland government allows waste levy exemptions worth $400 million 

The waste industry and LNP opposition are calling for more transparency in the waste levy regime as it emerges the value of exemptions outweighs the amount collected. 


Dalrymple Bay coal terminal a ‘good asset’, says QIC boss [$] 

Queensland Investment Corporation chief executive says the fund manager will only invest in local assets that deliver a strong financial return. 


Parties wrangle over green tape [$] 

There will be unnecessary jobs delays and a regulatory nightmare for the mining and infrastructure sectors under a proposed environmental overhaul, Labor has claimed. 


Shark control measure that’s yet to get off the ground [$] 

It’s a year since an investigation into the state’s shark control program recommended this measure, but it is still yet to be trialled. 


New corals discovered in deep-sea study of Great Barrier Reef Marine Park 

For the first time, scientists have viewed the deepest regions of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park, discovered five undescribed species consisting of black corals and sponges, and recorded Australia’s first observation of an extremely rare fish. 


Adani launches own rail company to transport coal  

Indian mining giant Adani is forced to launch its own rail company to haul coal to Abbot Point shipping terminal after years of protests from anti-mining activists scared off potential contractors, in a move that could add $200 million to cost of the project. 


Anthony Lynham punished for not being a career politician [$] 

Steven Wardill 

It says much about the current Labor crop that some bright sparks thought ousting one of the Government’s most reliable ministers just before a state election was acceptable. 


South Australia 

SA to roll out ban of single-use plastics in Australian first 

South Australia becomes the first state in Australia to ban single-use plastics, but the new rules will not come into force until next year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 


SA’s historic plastic laws will save animal lives 

The Australian Marine Conservation Society (AMCS) has welcomed the passing of South Australia’s historic new laws to ban single-use plastics – laws that will save the lives of iconic ocean wildlife like whales and dolphins. 


KI timber firm signs contracts for controversial, unapproved port 

The timber company behind a controversial port development on Kangaroo Island’s north coast has signed a construction contract for the work – despite the project not being approved. 


Water in West Lakes cleared for recreational use [$] 

West Lakes rowers, swimmers and boaties can breathe a sigh of relief as EPA test results confirm the lake is safe for recreational use. But fishers will have to wait a little longer. 


Plans released for $12m Breakout Creek redevelopment [$] 

A $12 million linear park running down Breakout Creek to the River Torrens outlet has been on the cards for years. Now the plans for the final stage have been released. 



Research and monitoring of wombat mange in Tasmania continues 

A University of Tasmania research project monitoring wombat mange is yielding promising results. 


$1.5m highway cycle safety improvements get going [$] 

Cycle safety upgrade works worth $1.5m have started on a dangerous stretch of North Tasmanian highway.  


Tasmanian heritage isle for price of garbage tip [$] 

Rent for a developer’s exclusive use of a pristine island in Tasmania’s wilderness was set at a rate only slightly above that charged for a rubbish tip, leaked documents show. 


Forest code breaches ‘explained away’ by FPA 

Geoffrey Swan 

Several breaches of the Forest Practices Code appear to have been waved away by the nominal regulator, the Forest Practices Authority. The infringements were made recently during logging operations in a coupe in the Styx Valley. 


Birds of Bruny Island & Tasmania 

Cat Davidson is looking forward to sharing her experience as she takes you through the twelve endemic birds that call Tasmania home, and the breeding endemics who make their way across the Bass Strait each year. 


Western Australia 

‘We are basically being prevented from doing it’: Rio Tinto Juukan Gorge inquiry may be suspended indefinitely 

The chair of the federal inquiry into Rio Tinto’s destruction of ancient rock shelters in the Pilbara says he is “profoundly disappointed” that the inquiry may today be suspended indefinitely. 


‘Divorced from reality’: Indigenous leaders back calls for ‘clean-out’ at Rio Tinto 

Indigenous leaders have backed calls for an executive clean-out at Rio Tinto, following the destruction of the 46,000-year-old Juukan Gorge rock shelters. 


Study to beef up carbon-neutral credentials [$] 

A landmark study of Western Australia’s biggest beef processor will map out carbon emissions across the supply chain, as the industry grapples with the challenge of becoming carbon-neutral by the end of the decade. 


Please Explain podcast: Why did Rio Tinto destroy sacred Juukan Gorge caves? 

In this episode, Sunday Age editor David King is joined by business reporter Nick Toscano to talk us through the parliamentary inquiry that’s investigating what happened at the archaeologically significant Juukan Gorge site. 



Adani now ranks as world’s biggest owner and contractor of solar farms 

Adani Group is now world’s leading solar power generation asset owner in terms of operating and off-taker contracted solar projects, but still wants to mine coal. 


Covid may have hastened peak oil, but clean energy fight is far from over 

Covid may temporarily cut emissions, but the world will still likely blow past the carbon budget for a 1.5-degree future in 2028. 


India to have 220 GW renewable energy capacity by 2022: PM Narendra Modi 

The Prime Minister asserted that ISA is part of this project which can bring transformational benefits for entire humanity 


Soaring to new (clean energy) heights 

If skydiving is on your bucket list, there might soon be a way you can tick it off without hurting the environment, following the world’s first skydive from a solar-powered aircraft. 


South Korea’s Green New Deal shows the world what a smart economic recovery looks like 

As the COVID-19 pandemic devastates the global economy, there’s an opportunity for governments to support a green-led recovery. This involves spending fiscal stimulus on renewable energy and other clean technologies to create jobs while addressing climate change. 


The UK government is facing a legal challenge over air pollution due to emerging link to  Covid-19 

Lawyers and environmental campaigners have put forward a legal challenge to try and force the UK government to take more action on poor air quality – as a link is increasingly emerging between air pollution and COVID-19 mortality rates. 


Donald Trump calls himself ‘a great environmentalist’, prompting accusations of ‘greenhouse gaslighting’ 

Mr Trump has called climate change a hoax, weakened oversight of drilling in federal waters, opened up the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil and gas companies, and moved to repeal about 100 environmental regulations. 


China’s sliding coal imports weakens one of the last bullish supports 

China’s coal imports fell to an eight-month low of 20.66 million tonnes in August, down 20.8 per cent from July’s 26.1 million and a massive 33 per cent below the level recorded in August last year, according to customs data 


India to have 220 GW renewable energy capacity by 2022: PM Narendra Modi 

The Prime Minister asserted that ISA is part of this project which can bring transformational benefits for entire humanity 


Do as plants do: Novel photocatalysts can perform solar-driven conversion of CO2 into fuel 

Scientists develop a novel ‘heterostructured’ photocatalyst using titanium and copper, two abundant and relatively inexpensive metals. Their cost-effective synthesis procedure, coupled with the high stability of the photocatalyst, provides an economically feasible way to convert waste carbon dioxide and water into useful hydrocarbon fuels using endless sunlight. 


How SUVs conquered the world – at the expense of its climate 

Exclusive new emissions analysis shows how much more dangerous SUVs are for the climate than smaller vehicles, and how they have become part of our lives. 


Wild cousins may help crops battle climate change 

Wild relatives of our domestic crops already cope with harsh conditions and resist disease. Can we use them to help our preferred crops adapt? 


Food wrappers passed cigarette butts as the most common beach trash 

Of the nearly 32.5 million pieces of trash collected by Ocean Conservancy cleanups, there were 4.7 million food wrappers. 


Coronavirus showed the way cities fund public transport is broken – here’s how it needs to change 

Jenny McArthur et al 

COVID-19 has triggered a crisis for public transport, as lockdowns caused its use to plummet by 70-90% worldwide. Even as lockdowns ease, buses and trains can only carry 15% of the usual number of people due to social distancing requirements – taking the “mass” out of mass transit for the foreseeable future. 


Nature Conservation 

Zimbabwe group tries to stop Chinese coal mine in game park 

The mining may cause a decline in tourism and decrease the incomes of local residents who rely on it for income, while poaching and conflict between people and wildlife could increase, the organisation argued. 


National parks preserve more than species 

National parks are safe havens for endangered and threatened species, but an analysis by data scientists finds parks and protected areas can preserve more than species. 


Humanity’s underwater construction footprint quantified 

Ocean sprawl covers more than 30,000 square kilometers of the sea floor – larger than the area of some coastal habitats, including mangroves and seagrass beds. 


Toxic pesticides and flame-retardants found in monkey, baboon, and chimpanzee poop 

Baboons in the U.S., howler monkeys in Costa Rica, and baboons, chimpanzees, red-tailed monkeys, and red colobus in Uganda are all getting exposed to dangerous pesticides and flame-retardant chemicals, according to new research. 


Humans, not climate, have driven rapidly rising mammal extinction rate 

Human impact can explain ninety-six percent of all mammal species extinctions of the last hundred thousand years, according to a new study. 

Maelor Himbury

6 Florence St Niddrie 3042



If you have received this email in error, please notify the sender by 
return email, delete it from your system and destroy any copies.