Daily Links Mar 5

You’d think that a free-market government would choose the best policy regime to allow the market to choose the most efficient means to deliver on policy objectives. But, when you’ve won power by many questionable means, not least of which was the great big TOE, the Tax On Everything, you’re probably a bit hamstrung and your donors will see that that remains the case. So no carbon tax from this lot, folks.

Post of the Day

Want to cut emissions that cause climate change? Tax carbon

Carbon taxes are cheaper, more efficient than other policies, study finds


On This Day

March 5

St. Piran’s Day – Cornwall


Ecological Observance

National Tree Planting Day – Iran

Be Cruelty Free Week

Youth and Schools Clean Up Day


Climate Change

Climate change ‘winners’ may owe financial compensation to polluters

New economic and philosophical research argues that policymakers must consider both the beneficial effects of climate change to “climate winners” as well as its costs in order to appropriately incentivize actions that are best for society and for the environment.


High end of climate sensitivity in new climate models seen as less plausible

Researchers at Princeton University and the University of Miami found that the latest generation of high-sensitivity climate models do not provide a plausible scenario of Earth’s future climate. These models project that clouds moderate greenhouse gas-induced warming — particularly in the northern hemisphere — much more than climate records show actually happens. The results provide a cautionary tale on interpreting climate simulations, which can determine the aggressiveness of carbon-mitigation policies.


Climate models may significantly overestimate savings from improved energy efficiency

The models used to produce global climate scenarios may overestimate the energy and emission savings from improved energy efficiency, warns new research led by academics at the University of Sussex Business School and the University of Leeds.


More extreme short-duration thunderstorms likely in the future due to global warming

New research by Newcastle University has shown that warming temperatures in some regions of the UK are the main drivers of increases in extreme short-duration rainfall intensities, which tend to occur in summer and cause dangerous flash flooding.


Want to cut emissions that cause climate change? Tax carbon

Carbon taxes are cheaper, more efficient than other policies, study finds


‘Best case’ goals for climate warming which could still result in massive wildfire risk

The landmark 2015 Paris Agreement resulted in multiple studies examining the impact of global temperature increases, but these rarely investigate the effect of warming on “fire weather” conditions. Now, in a new study, scientists have found that by projecting two different types of fire weather conditions, an additional half-degree of warming could drastically increase the likelihood and significance of blazes worldwide.


4 assumptions about gender that distort how we think about climate change (and 3 ways to do better)

Jacqueline Lau et al

Gender influences how people experience and respond to climate change. This is particularly evident in developing nations where women and men adapt to climatic shocks differently. Women work harder and longer, in poorer conditions, while men are more likely to migrate to find work that’s often insecure and unreliable.



Reserve Bank to buy just 20 pct GreenPower in deal with Delta Electricity

The RBA has revealed it is purchasing just 20% GreenPower under a $10.9m electricity contract with Delta Electricity, having flagged sourcing all its power from renewables.


Switch to 100 pct renewables will drive economic growth, but watch for green bubbles: AXA

Australia must transition to net zero as fast as possible to ensure economic growth. But investment giant AXA says there is a risk of green bubbles forming.


AEMC looks beyond coal and gas to batteries and flexible grid to manage reliability

Market rule maker looks beyond coal, and even gas, to batteries and a flexible two-way grid in review of electricity reliability standards.


Minerals processing roadmap: An opportunity for jobs and climate

The Federal Government’s plan to boost processing of critical minerals needed for batteries, solar panels and wind turbines is a welcome step that can potentially strengthen our economy while tackling climate change.


National plan to tackle plastic waste

The Morrison Government is taking the fight against plastic waste to a new level, from plastic free beaches, to ending the confusion over household collection systems, declaring war on cigarette butts and putting an end to polystyrene consumer packaging.


Wheelie-bin revolution to begin after April environment talks

Inconsistent council wheelie-bin waste collection systems across Australia will begin to be standardised from April.


Former chief scientist spruiks Australia’s green tech on world stage

Alan Finkel is meeting senior international officials in Europe and Asia in a new diplomatic effort ahead of a trio of crunch climate change summits this year.


Councils across NSW and Queensland join forces to demand climate action from Morrison Government

An unlikely group of leaders have broken away from the historic state rivalry to pressure the Morrison government for ‘urgent action’.


Wesfarmers shows emissions gap widening between business and Canberra [$]

John Durie

Wesfarmers has broken new ground for industrial companies by breaking down divisional carbon emissions in its regular ASX presentations to spruik its financial results.


Carbon capture technology for a clearer future

Elio D’Amato

There is big potential in delivering a CCS system that works, is reliable and helps bring net emissions to zero. This is how some ASX-listed companies are progressing.


How Taylor and Murdoch media distort problems with renewables and gas

Giles Parkinson

Greg Hunt’s “fact checking” for vaccine misinformation should be copied by the energy department. But they’d be flat out checking their minister’s own declarations.


Dig this: a tiny echidna moves 8 trailer-loads of soil a year, helping tackle climate change

David John Eldridge

After 200 years of European farming practices, Australian soils are in bad shape – depleted of nutrients and organic matter, including carbon. This is bad news for both soil health and efforts to address global warming.



Victoria network plans upgrade to allow for more rooftop solar exports

Victorian electricity distributor to spend $3m upgrading network in “solar hotspots” in four-month blitz to allow more rooftop solar power back onto the grid.


Woman wins landmark compensation claim after lawyers argued her lupus was caused by silica dust

Lawyers win compensation for a woman diagnosed with a chronic autoimmune condition, developed after 20 years of working in a mineral-processing factory where she was exposed to toxic dust.


Yarra Council rubbishes residents’ recycling plea [$]

Greens-run Yarra Council still won’t collect its residents’ recyclable rubbish weekly – instead ratepayers are being told to drop off any cardboard waste themselves.


Constitutional meddling means Andrews could govern from the grave

Annika Smethurst

Setting the fracking ban in stone will set a dangerous precedent where political parties think it’s acceptable to ignore the power of future parliaments.


New South Wales

Construction set to start on Australia’s first lithium-ion battery manufacturing plant

Prime Minister Scott Morrison tours the site of what will soon be Australia’s first advanced manufacturing facility of lithium-ion batteries.


Wildlife ‘bounces back’ after out-of-control burn in Sydney

A hazard reduction burn gone wrong last year undid years of work by researchers to repopulate North Head with native mammals. But not all is lost, as animals have been spotted once more, some even with young.


Government asked to explain what will happen to huge amount of water during dam expansion

Will the NSW government have to create a man-made drought in order to shore up water security? That’s the question as authorities look to drain one of the state’s largest dams.


PM opposes northern beaches gas project, signalling potential rift

Scott Morrison has announced his opposition to a gas drilling licence offshore from Sydney’s northern beaches ahead of a ruling on it by a Nationals MP.


NSW abandons electric scooter trial because minister ‘not in the mood’

The NSW government has abandoned plans for an electric scooter trial in Sydney despite a national push to legalise the mobility devices.


UK tells NSW it wants Australia to have more ambitious emissions reduction target

Mr Kean said Ms Trevelyan called him and the two discussed the gap between the net zero goals of Australia’s states and the federal government’s target of net zero “preferably” by 2050.



The countdown is on to ditching single-use plastic in the ACT. Are we ready?

For years now, Canberra businesses have been urged by the ACT Government to ditch non-recyclable cutlery and containers. Soon, they won’t have a choice.



Water grid falls to lowest level after summer since Millennium Drought

South-east Queenslanders are being urged to use less water as the region’s dams hit their lowest levels after summer since the devastating Millennium Drought.


Wilderness years: Why Gold Coast environmentalists are hopeful despite mounting odds

Jessica Lovegrove-Walsh and her fellow nature lovers face urban sprawl, rising sea levels and public apathy as they fight for the region’s green spaces. They say it’s a battle they have to win.


Foreign ship convicted for dumping rubbish on World Heritage-listed Great Barrier Reef

A foreign shipping company has been convicted for dumping food waste onto the World Heritage-listed Great Barrier Reef.


South Australia

Electric vehicle tax put on hold as SA Government monitors similar charges interstate

The South Australian Government has delayed the introduction of a user charge for people who drive electric cars while it monitors the implementation of similar measures in Victoria.


Boomers supercharge electric bike boom

The electric bike industry is booming in South Australia, with much of the demand being driven by an unexpected demographic – retirees.



Fork it Farm was one of the recipients of a waste grant

Sustainable practices are embedded in Fork it Farm’s ethos, but that ethos will become more profound thanks to a new funding grant.


Ultra-marathon in Tarkine has no risk of company intervention, Tasmanian Supreme Court finds

Court proceedings against Sustainable Timber Tasmania could have been avoided if they had been more upfront about information they provided to the Bob Brown Foundation about a planned ultra-marathon.


Greens plea to end duck shooting falls on deaf ears, season starts on Saturday

With the start of the wild duck shooting season set to begin on Saturday, the Greens are raising questions about why 50,000 ducks should die while in other states the practice is banned.


BBF claims forest win ‘for all Tasmanians’

Media release – Bob Brown Foundation

In Hobart’s Supreme Court this afternoon a great victory was won for all Tasmanians by Bob Brown Foundation.


‘Make this year’s duck hunting season the last’

Andrew Wilkie et al

“Over the three-month Tasmanian hunting season, almost 50,000 ducks will be shot,” Mr Wilkie said. “Some will be killed outright, but as many as 13,000 will be wounded and left to suffer a slow and painful death. This isn’t sport, it’s state-sanctioned slaughter.


Northern Territory

National drilling initiative reveals golden opportunity for northern Australia

The first data from an innovative drilling project has confirmed the mineral potential of a previously underexplored region of northern Australia.


Time to talk to business about fees [$]

NT News editorial

Most ordinary Territorians will be quite comfortable with the introduction of fees for trekkers and campers in our parks


Western Australia

Pat Dodson calls for Royal Commission into Pilbara mining

After revelations of two separate cultural heritage incidents in the Pilbara by mining giants FMG and BHP, Labor Senator Pat Dodson has called for a Royal Commission into mining in the region.



Ghosts of past pesticide use can haunt organic farms for decades

Although the use of pesticides in agriculture is increasing, some farms have transitioned to organic practices and avoid applying them. But it’s uncertain whether chemicals applied to land decades ago can continue to influence the soil’s health after switching to organic management. Now, researchers reporting in ACS’ Environmental Science & Technology have identified pesticide residues at 100 Swiss farms, including all the organic fields studied, with beneficial soil microbes’ abundance negatively impacted by their occurrence.


People wasting almost 1bn tonnes of food a year, UN report reveals

Food discarded in homes is 74kg per person each year, with problem affecting rich and poor countries


Protein discovery could help enable eco-friendly fungicides

Findings explain how plants use RNA to defend against fungal invaders


Nature Conservation

Small-scale fisheries offer strategies for resilience in the face of climate change

Small-scale fisheries, which employ about 90 percent of the world’s fishers and supply half the fish for human consumption, are on the frontlines of climate change. They may offer insights into resilience.


Mediterranean beaches are awash with a mysterious tar, and no-one can figure out where it came from

Israel is still investigating the oil spill’s source, weeks after its arrival. Yet, as theories have been floated and accusations thrown, the mystery of who is behind one of the region’s worst environmental disasters so far remains unsolved.


Limiting invasive species may be a better goal than eliminating them

Managing invasive species — not eliminating them altogether — is a better use of time and conservation resources in many cases, according to a biologist.


Butterfly numbers plummeting in US west as climate crisis takes toll

The total number of butterflies west of the Rockies has fallen 1.6% a year since 1977, a study finds – ‘You extrapolate it and it’s crazy’


Will climate change outpace species adaptation?

Species evolve heat tolerance more slowly than cold tolerance


Uganda forests risk depletion due to rapid population growth

Ugandan experts have revealed that the country’s population is expected to rise to 75 million in the next decade, warning this could directly and negatively impact on forests.


Planting trees helps fight climate change—but we need billions more seedlings

The U.S. must more than double the production of seedlings to meet reforestation goals, researchers say.


Trump was a disaster for wildlife. Here are 5 things Biden’s Interior secretary can do to help

If confirmed, Deb Haaland will have her work cut out for her.


Over half of global environmental defender murders in 2020 in Colombia: report

Impunity still reigns when it comes to the murders of human rights defenders around the world, according to the Front Line Defenders organization, in its global analysis of 2020.


Reforested areas rival mature forests in securing water, study finds

That forests are good for the environment is a no-brainer. What isn’t as clear-cut: how do newly planted woodlands affect water availability?


Invasive grass is overwhelming U.S. deserts—providing fuel for wildfires

Volunteers are yanking the dangerous grasses from public lands across the American Southwest.

Maelor Himbury
6 Florence St Niddrie 3042
0432406862 or 0393741902
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