Daily Links Oct 22

Thunderstorms, hail and flash-flooding? Deal with it. Of greater concern is how will this affect the AFL Grand Final? Some things are serious.


From: Maelor Himbury <maelor@melbpc.org.au>
Date: 22 October 2020 at 8:41:45 am AEDT
Subject: Daily Links Oct 22

Post of the Day 

Air pollution kills almost half a million babies around the world 

Scientists have discovered polluted air has an impact on the health of babies while they are still in the womb. 


On This Day 

October 22 


Ecological Observance 

Wombat Day 


Coronavirus Watch 

Today’s Update 


Coronavirus reinfection cases: what we know so far – and the vital missing clues 

Sheena Cruickshank 

As President Trump claims that he is immune to COVID-19 and isolated reports emerge of reinfection, what is the truth about immunity to COVID-19? 


What fans of ‘herd immunity’ don’t tell you 

John M. Barry 

A proposal to let people with low risk of infection live without constraint could lead to a million or more preventable deaths. 


Is reaching zero COVID-19 even possible? 

Kingston Mills 

With a vaccine, yes, elimination is possible. But we need to be realistic about how long this might take 


Climate Change 

How extreme weather can affect children 

They can’t protect themselves, so they must rely on adults to care for them. 


Greta Thunberg accuses MEPs of ‘surrender on climate and environment’ 

European parliament votes to continue payments to farmers with no green conditions attached 


Poll: Two-thirds of voters support Biden climate plan 

New polling indicates Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden’s climate plan is doing well with voters even as they are split on their support for fracking. 


The new line of attack on climate science 

Jordan Thomas 

Earlier generations failed to base policy on science. Our communities are now dealing with the consequences of that failure. 


Throwing trillions at climate policies is sheer folly [$] 

Bjorn Lomborg 

Promising to spend $US2 trillion ($2.8 trillion) on climate over the next four years, US presidential candidate Joe Biden is taking a path similar to that of politicians from many other rich countries, vowing costly policies to help address global warming. Along with his fellow Democrats, he pledges to end fossil fuels in the power sector by 2035 and cut net US emissions to zero by 2050. 



AEMO leads global push for $10 trillion of investment in next 10 years to slash emissions 

Between various energy forecasts of the coming decades, one consistent trend emerges: in power systems around the world, renewables – wind and solar – will grow far faster than has been previously predicted. 


CEP and Marubeni unveil plans for 1GW battery and 1.5GW of solar in Australia 

Big new renewables fund chaired by a former NSW Premier has billion-dollar plans to install 1.5GW of solar and 1GW of battery storage on C&I sites around Australia. 


Coalition says Technology Roadmap emission cuts a ‘projection’, not a ‘commitment’ 

Coalition sheds new light on Technology Roadmap: “Don’t confuse commitments with projections that are in documents underpinned by a series of assumptions.” 


Australian researchers say “unusual” breakthrough may solve perovskite solar instability 

An “unusual discovery” by Australian researchers claims to have resolved one of the fundamental challenges slowing the progress of perovskite solar cells. 


‘New jobs, new industries, new wealth’: Kevin Rudd’s vision for a green recovery out of the pandemic 

Former PM says Australia risks becoming ‘the complacent country’ and could suffer another recession if it remains tied to fossil fuels 


Conservation plan launches to regenerate Australia 

The plan is initially aiming to double the number of koalas on the east coast by 2050 


Meet Ayla: A child growing up in a changing climate 

Ayla is a girl born in Australia in 2020. For better and for worse, her life is going to be influenced by a warming climate. 


‘Severe storm trifecta’ heading for the east coast 

Flooding, hail and damaging winds are all on the cards for the east coast over the coming days, with the La Niña ready to make its presence felt. But how that could affect the grand finals is still uncertain. 


Australian company directors call for more infrastructure spending and a Green New Deal 

Survey suggests the corporate community is increasingly at odds with the Morrison government’s gas-led recovery 


Morrison government ‘ignored’ Climate Change Authority’s advice on Covid recovery 

Report hails the chance to jump-start the economy and deal with climate change, but the Coalition prefers a gas-led recovery 


Australia should create ‘Pacific visa’ to reduce impact of climate change and disaster on islanders 

Displacement is growing in the Asia-Pacific region, and a new policy paper argues migration policies must be established now 


Corruption investigation into Border Force patrol boat deal  

The anti-corruption commission in charge of the investigation has pulled its punches over the $39m payment and taken the probe behind closed doors. 


Political leaders such as Premier Berejiklian are getting away with murder 

Sue Arnold  

Australia’s political leaders need to be held to account for their legacy of destruction of our environment and the death of the planet, writes Sue Arnold. 


Financial case for Snowy Hydro 2.0 just doesn’t hold water 

John Hewson  

The government has made extraordinary, open-ended commitments to this “nation-building, game-changing” project – and taxpayers are carrying the risk. 


Reassert constitutional norms [$] 

Australian editorial 

As well as economic damage, COVID-19 has left our personal liberties and democratic institutions in a critical condition. 



Envirostream applies for licence 

Environment Protection Authority Victoria (EPA) is assessing a licence application from Envirostream Australia Pty Ltd at its existing 20-22 Berwick Rd, Campbellfield site. 


Algae confirmed at Green Lake 

Green Lake near Horsham is closed to the public after the presence of blue-green algae was confirmed. 


Push to convert Victoria into hydrogen energy powerhouse 

The state has been urged to harness hydrogen to lead the development of green energy, create thousands of jobs. 


Blowout in city travel times predicted as lockdown eases 

Trips on Melbourne’s major highways could blow out by half an hour compared with traffic before the COVID-19 crisis, as city-bound commuters face gridlock once lockdown measures are lifted. 


How waterways could overhaul city commute [$] 

Changing the way Melbourne uses its waterways could redefine transport for commuters and tourists in a post-coronavirus world, according to a city councillor. 


Don’t make the CBD the World’s Most Liveable Car Park 

Elizabeth Taylor 

Melburnians have long had a handy list of reasons to choose cars over public transport: poor coverage in outer areas, irregular services, unreliable connections, fear of crime (or perhaps “cooties”). 


New South Wales 

Coal mine expansion project ‘no risk’ to Sydney’s drinking water, says mining company 

A coal mining company seeking to expand beneath Sydney’s drinking water catchment says it has “engineered out” any risk to the environment — but locals are wary. 


Council adopts concept plans to revitalise Crescent Head village and foreshore areas 

Reconfiguring the Crescent Head foreshore and carpark to increase public open space, widen footpaths and install new picnic areas and a new skatepark along with revitalising the town centre, will now be part of the future vision for Crescent Head. 


Cancer screenings cancelled after fresh incident at Lucas Heights nuclear facility 

A fault at Australia’s only nuclear medical facility leads to shortages of isotope crucial for diagnosing a variety of conditions 


‘It stinks’: Botany Bay sewage releases must halt, Thistlethwaite says 

Sydney Water is periodically releasing sewage into Botany Bay, creating risks for the health of the local community and ecosystems. 


‘Just like a freight train’: cicadas’ song hints at bushfire bounceback 

Wander in many parts of the Blue Mountains during the daytime and it’s likely your ears will soon be ringing with the sound of countless cicadas singing for a mate. 


We must reclaim our right to protest 

Caitlin Fitzsimmons 

Hands up who remembers the Extinction Rebellion’s disruptive “spring rebellion” from last year. Now keep your hand up if you knew that it happened again last week. 



Greens pull ahead in Brindabella as Labor lose ground across city 

Labor has fallen behind in the neck-and-neck race for the final seats in Ginninderra and Brindabella. 



ARENA backs program to help manufacturers use more solar, less gas 

ARENA-backed and ERM Power-led program will help 20 Queensland manufacturers boost industrial energy productivity, cut emissions and reduce 


Conservationists urge KAP to back laws that protect Great Barrier Reef 

The Australian Marine Conservation Society (AMCS) is concerned a Katter’s Australian Party (KAP) candidate has told voters they will seek to use scrapping the Reef regulations and tree clearing laws as a bargaining chip if the party secures the balance of power in the upcoming Queensland election. 


Police charge Brisbane activist after lord mayor calls to ‘lock her up’ 

An Extinction Rebellion activist has been charged with three offences after allegedly blocking traffic on a motorway bypass at Milton on Wednesday and causing delays as far back as Mount Gravatt. 


South Australia 

Fire threats revealed in 3D [$] 

World-first technology from an Adelaide company to find fuel loads that threaten to drive bushfires is set to take flight today. 


South Australia records 100pc solar in world first [$] 

A never-ending boom in rooftop solar installations has driven demand for grid-based power to record lows in several states and helped drive prices lower. 


The Olympic Dam silver bullet is forever tarnished [$]  

Cameron England  

BHP, and our politicians, should be wary of rolling out the “expansion” tag to a state weary of spin around Olympic Dam. 



Tasmanian Government doesn’t commit to fossil fuel divestment 

The Tasmanian Government has not committed to divestment of fossil-fuel aligned companies, despite a shift in the private sector away from such projects. 

Why the death of a small, punk-like fish rocked the marine world 

The smooth handfish is the first extinct marine bony fish of modern times. Scientists are now wondering how many more have disappeared unnoticed 


Northern Territory 

Traditional Owner fronts court for anti-fracking protest 

Anti-fracking protesters plead not guilty to criminal damages, with one Traditional Owner saying he was motivated by fear that local Indigenous voices were being silenced by the government. 


Australian outback cattle station to house world’s largest solar farm, powering Singapore 

Electricity from $20bn farm on 10,000 sq km property in Newcastle Waters also planned to feed Northern Territory’s power grid 


Tourism industry questions funding for Kakadu masterplan [$] 

The Territory’s Top End tourism industry has asked Parks Australia for the two week deadline for feedback to the Draft Kakadu Tourism Masterplan to be extended 


Company remains shtum on plans to filter Laramba’s contaminated water supply 

The health of a remote Aboriginal community north of Alice Springs continues to be put at risk due to high-levels of uranium contaminating its water supply. 



Celebrity endorsement of environmental causes: Does it work? 

Famous people are often lauded for using their public image to raise awareness of environmental issues and causes. But do these campaigns make any difference? 


Graph of the day – Wind climbs to the top of the renewable mountain in the US 

In the US, wind overtakes hydro to become the most-consumed source of renewable energy in 2019. 


Air pollution kills almost half a million babies around the world 

Scientists have discovered polluted air has an impact on the health of babies while they are still in the womb. 


Kenya’s ′waste warriors′ rely on trash for income 

The downturn in hospitality and tourism as a result of the coronavirus pandemic means scavenging has become even less lucrative than before. 


Electric cars ‘as cheap to manufacture’ as regular models by 2024 

Analysis by UBS suggests shift away from fossil fuel vehicles may be imminent 


Anglo American sued over alleged mass lead poisoning of children in Zambia 

Lawsuit claims mining firm failed to prevent pollution in Kabwe, affecting multiple generations 


London the worst city in Europe for health costs from air pollution 

Study measured financial impact of car emissions on deaths, health and lost working days in 432 urban areas 


The highest heat-resistant plastic ever is developed from biomass 

The use of biomass-derived plastics is one of the prime concerns to establish a sustainable society, which is incorporated as one of the Sustainable Development Goals. However, the use of most of the biomass-derived plastics is limited due to their low heat resistance. Collaborative research between JAIST and U-Tokyo has successfully developed the white-biotechnological conversion from cellulosic biomass into the aromatic polymers having the highest thermodegradation of all the plastics reported ever. 


Small nuclear reactors would provide carbon-free energy, but would they be safe? 

Regulators have approved designs for 12 small reactors to be built in Idaho, but opponents say the project is dangerous and too late to fight climate change. 


Nature Conservation 

‘No other choice’: Groups push to protect vast swaths of Antarctic seas 

A coalition of conservation groups is advocating for the establishment of three new marine protected areas (MPAs) in East Antarctica, the Antarctic Peninsula and the Weddell Sea. 


Human-driven climate change is changing the colors of fall foliage, scientists say 

Introduced pests, pathogens and invasive species are causing immediate changes. Climate change also may shape the forest colors of the future. 


Deforestation threatens to wipe out a primate melting pot in Indonesia 

An evolutionary crucible in Indonesia that’s given rise to a unique array of primate is at risk of disappearing due to rapid deforestation, a new study warns. 


EU seeks Amazon protections pledge from Bolsonaro in push to ratify trade deal 

Brussels is in talks with Brazil’s far-right nationalist president, Jair Bolsonaro, over commitments on the future of the Amazon as it seeks to persuade Emmanuel Macron and other EU leaders and parliaments to ratify the trade deal the bloc has negotiated with South America. 


Genome sequencing shows climate barrier to spread of Africanized bees 

Added diversity may be useful for breeding bees 


Legacy pollutants found in migratory terns in Great Lakes region 

Chemicals that haven’t been manufactured in the U.S. for years or even decades are still turning up in the bodies of migratory terns in the Great Lakes region, a new study finds. The research focused on three types of compounds: PBDEs, PCBs, and the breakdown products, called metabolites, of DDT. 


Protected areas help waterbirds adapt to climate change 

Climate change pushes species distribution areas northward. However, the expansion of species ranges is not self-evident due to e.g. habitat degradation and unsustainable harvesting caused by human activities. A new study led from the University of Turku, Finland, suggests that protected areas can facilitate wintering waterbird adaptation to climate warming by advancing their range shifts towards north. 


Maelor Himbury

6 Florence St Niddrie 3042



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