Daily Links Jun 17

The design of the energy market (whether very largely or wholly designed by the generators, your choice) could hardly be more perverse in providing sufficient energy at a reasonable price where and when it is needed. There’ll be analysis of this exemplar of market failure, enabled by strategies to capture government policy, in economic research for years to come. Don’t blink, Chris Bowen!

Post of the Day

 Now is the perfect time to increase coal royalties to fund Australia’s energy transition

John Quiggin

The usual trade-off between maximising revenue while protecting industry’s long-term future no longer applies


On This Day

June 17


Ecological Observance

World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought


Climate Change

Is climate change making us sick? How rising temperatures could be exacerbating the spread of disease

A new study predicts the changing climate will provide increased opportunities for the spread of novel viruses.


Climate-fuelled wave patterns pose an erosion risk for developing countries

The world’s coastlines are at the forefront of climate change. That’s because they’re constantly changing, and respond quickly to changes in climate. 


Greenhouse gases must be legally phased out, US scientists argue

A petition calls on the Environmental Protection Agency to regulate emissions under the Toxic Substances Control Act


How millions of lives can be saved if the US acts now on climate

Researchers have now calculated how many people could be saved from heat-related death if the US takes meaningful action

Fact check: Peak stupidity to claim mountain range is planet’s biggest CO2 emitter

Rather than being affected by carbon pollution, a post claims Asia’s lofty mountain range is the “biggest emitter of CO2 on the planet”.


Rich countries push back against helping poor nations with climate change fallout

Rich countries including the European Union and the United States have pushed back against efforts to put financial help for poor nations suffering the devastating effects of global warming firmly on the agenda for this year’s UN climate summit.


Antarctica’s ‘Doomsday Glacier’ losing ice at fastest rate in 5,000 years

Two Antarctic glaciers are now losing ice at a faster rate than any time over the past 5,500 years, with “potentially disastrous” implications for sea level rise, new research has found.


Repeated hurricane exposure linked to adverse psychological symptoms

Repeated exposure to hurricanes, whether direct, indirect or media-based, is linked to adverse psychological symptoms and may be associated with increased mental health problems, according to a new study.


In hottest city on Earth, mothers bear brunt of climate change – video

It was one day after the temperature in Jacobabad hit a record-breaking 51 degrees Celsius, making it the hottest city on Earth that day. In one home, six-month-old Tamanna cries in the afternoon heat. Today her mother, Razia, has enough water to pour over the baby in a metal basin and soap her down. Tamanna is calmer, cooing and playing with her mother’s scarf.



Albanese locks in Australia’s higher 2030 emissions reduction target

Albanese formally commits Australia to a stronger 2030 emissions reduction target, as Bowen blames energy crisis on slow renewables investment.

“Australia is under new management”: Bowen tells clean energy investors

Federal climate minister Chris Bowen says Australia now “open for business”, calling on investors to seize a $130 billion green investment opportunity.


Q+A panellists back Labor’s grand plan on rewiring the energy grid but warn ‘it won’t be easy’

Thursday’s Q+A panel was unanimous in its support for Labor’s elaborate plan on re-wiring the energy grid and hoped the current crisis would create political will for a massive shift in how the country’s energy market works.


Australia stuck in EV slow lane despite Labor win as other nations speed ahead

Australia’s position as a laggard in the global EV race is unlikely to change despite the election of a more clean-transport-friendly Labor government, say industry experts.


The beef industry’s latest report on emissions is promising, but will it be enough to satisfy key markets?

Emissions are coming down as farmers increase the amount of ground cover across their paddocks, land clearing has slowed, and abattoirs have built systems that trap waste and divert it from landfill.


It’s been a turbulent week for Australia’s energy market. What’s happening with the blackout threat?

Australia’s energy operator made a massive move on Wednesday, and that’s keeping blackouts at bay — for now. So how did we get here? And what’s coming next?


Energy market intervention will last ‘as long as it needs to’, Bowen says

Energy Minister Chris Bowen says the government fully backs the unprecedented energy market takeover by the regulator, adding there is no time line on how long it will last.

Energy supply ‘improved’ since suspension

Australia’s energy regulator says conditions have improved in the electricity market after its unprecedented intervention earlier this week.


‘Beyond the crisis’: Top adviser says energy woes boost case for renewables

The pressure on the electricity grid highlights the need for a long-term shift away from the fossil fuels that are subject to global pricing, the chair of the Energy Security Board says.


Coal the burning issue in energy crisis

Experts agree that a shortage of coal-fired power generation is one of the main causes for the current crisis, where power prices are soaring and there are rolling warnings of electricity blackouts.


Labor faces carbon fight on all fronts [$]

Anthony Albanese faces a parliamentary defeat over his plan to legislate a 43 per cent emissions reduction target by 2030


‘Not a scientific reality in 2022’: Dutton attacks battery storage

Opposition Leader Peter Dutton attacks Labor’s plan to ramp up battery storage amid energy crisis; Russia names and shames its 121 least favourite Aussies. Follow updates here.


‘You can’t fix a decade of inaction in 10 days’: Albanese addresses Australian energy crisis – video

Prime minister Anthony Albanese criticises previous government’s inaction on energy policy while announcing Australia’s new climate targets  


What’s behind the energy crisis on Australia’s east coast? – podcast

Australia’s Energy Market Operator, AEMO, has made an unprecedented intervention this week amid the energy crisis gripping the country’s east coast.


5 policy decisions from recent history that led to today’s energy crisis

Roger Dargaville

If you aren’t a long-term energy policy news junkie, you’d be forgiven for thinking today’s crisis arrived fairly suddenly.


Gas Led Catastrophe, AEMO and the electricity market mayhem

Michael West

The electricity market has been suspended, blackouts loom, power prices soar – along with  corporate profits – and fingers are being rudely pointed. What’s the scam?


A decade of state capture is to blame for the energy crisis [$]

Bernard Keane

Having gained massive power through political influence, fossil fuel companies decided to abuse that power to the point where the electricity market broke down.


Picture imperfect

Rachel Withers

The Labor government today disappointed many by summoning industry stakeholders to Canberra for a ceremony in which it “formally pledged” its insufficient emissions-reduction target of 43 per cent on 2005 levels by 2030.

Roadblocks to the energy transition: Denial, opposition and lousy management

David Leitch

The problems with coal plants and their replacement is as much about lousy management as anything else. But Grok It! There is hope on the horizon.


Could these three solutions solve the energy crisis?

Tina Soliman Hunter and Madeline Taylor

The energy crisis is hitting the east coast hard. But Western Australia is sailing through because of government intervention in the market.


We may have turned the ‘climate corner’ but there’s more to the story

Michelle Grattan

The Albanese government is blaming the energy crisis engulfing eastern Australia on the Coalition’s failure to put in place policy to ensure adequate and timely investment in renewables. That’s correct, but it’s not the whole story


We need a hard look at the energy crisis

Canberra Times editorial

The incoming government has been hit by a perfect energy storm: winter plus soaring fuel prices through reasons way beyond its control.


Energy crunch an unexpected boon for Mike Cannon-Brookes

Kishor Napier-Raman and Noel Towell

How the crusading anti-fossil fuel billionaire tech bro could win out from Australia’s energy crunch. Plus, a new face at League HQ.


Our energy crisis has been a decade in the making. Don’t expect a quick solution

Stephen Bartholomeusz

The chaos and dysfunction in the national electricity market this week flows from the collision of a number of unexpected events with long-term vulnerabilities.


Labor’s 2030 emissions targets must aim higher and go faster

Climate Council

The Albanese Government has today submitted its enhanced nationally determined contribution (NDC) to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change secretariat.


 Now is the perfect time to increase coal royalties to fund Australia’s energy transition

John Quiggin

The usual trade-off between maximising revenue while protecting industry’s long-term future no longer applies


Albanese did not create the energy crisis, but he will have to fix it

David Crowe

Labor is electrified at the prospect of two terms in power but if they can’t keep the lights on, there could be an early outage.


Reality check for energy [$]

Ticky Fullerton

Former Energy Security Board chair Kerry Schott says the last 10 days is the wake-up call to the fact coal-fired generators are simply not reliable.


Chaos and dysfunction: Out in the cold without reliable baseload power [$]

Claire Lehmann

The European experience highlights the role that coal, gas or nuclear energy play in delivering energy reliability. If our leaders do not manage this situation carefully and learn from other nations, Australians may have to prepare for an energy crisis that never ends.


Energy fix must keep the market in the NEM

AFR editorial

This week’s electric shock had mostly outside causes. But it is a grim warning for the politicians supervising an electricity system with a huge transition in front of it.


Climate wars may be over, but the blame game continues [$]

Jennifer Hewett

Threats of blackouts and the regulatory takeover of power generation amid the collapse of the national electricity market highlight long-term domestic policy failure.


Keen to retrofit your home to lower its carbon footprint and save energy? Consider these 3 things

Nimish Biloria

If you’re anything like me, you’re increasingly working from home, one that was built before energy efficiency measures were introduced in Australia.


Fed up AEMO finally stands up to fossil fuel bullies pulling electricity heist

Michael West

Surely this is Australia’s Enron. The electricity market has been shut down after years of fossil fuel thuggery culminated in naked extortion this week.


Energy crisis worsened by the Coalition’s decade of empty spin

SMH editorial

Once there is an energy plan rather than just silly slogans, the pieces of this puzzle will fall into place.


The energy crisis happened on purpose. Why are we shocked? [$]

Caleb Bond

The energy crisis threatening to plunge Australians into the cold and dark has been a long time coming — and obvious.



Fracking, coal seam gas ‘not legal any time soon’, Andrews insists

The Victorian premier hit back at Federal Resources Minister Madeleine King’s suggestion that the state’s ban on fracking was a barrier to fixing the energy crisis.


Claims Andrews’ gas ban fuelled energy crisis [$]

Experts and industry chiefs say a gas moratorium implemented by the Andrews government has fuelled the state’s current energy crisis.


Power outage threat a major wake-up call


This week’s threat to our power supply shows all options should be on the table to end the perfect storm and Victoria’s “crazy” coal stance isn’t helping.


New South Wales

Labor’s support for Narrabri gas will do nothing for energy crisis

The Gomeroi people, farmers and climate activists have slammed Resources Minister Madeleine King’s push to fast-track the controversial Narrabri coal seam gas (CSG) project.


NSW given emergency powers to direct coal companies to provide fuel to electricity generators

In an extraordinary development in NSW’s energy crisis, Kean met the governor late on Thursday to seek the powers, which gives him authority to force coal and logistics companies to deliver fuel.


Forestry Corporation guilty of felling in koala exclusion zones near Coffs Harbour

Forestry Corporation NSW has been found illegally tree felling in koala exclusion zones in bushland near Coffs Harbour, with a judge saying it caused “actual harm” to koala habitat.


Amid turmoil in the energy market, everyday Australians are buying their share of the transition to renewables

In an Australian first, a small renewable energy company has turned to use crowdfunding for a new solar farm in southern New South Wales.


NSW’s largest coal mine to close, leaving 2,000 jobs in the balance

Mining giant BHP fails to find a buyer for its Mt Arthur operation in the NSW Hunter Valley, and announces it will close the site in 2030.


Bitou bush control program targets green menace of coast

Shoalhaven Council has secured another four years of funding through the NSW Department of Planning and Environment to control a key environmental threat Bitou Bush


Energy markets tipped to return to normal as NSW granted emergency powers to secure coal supplies

End of cold snap and return of more coal-fired power plants to ease pressure that caused national electricity market suspension

$180m for NSW marine management

The NSW government will commit a further $180 million to the management of marine estates, continuing on its ten-year strategy to invest in the coast.


Electric vehicle charging stations to be rolled out at shopping centres

Electric vehicle charging stations will be rolled out across 16 shopping centres across the country including the Macquarie Centre in Sydney in a deal between AMP Capital and EV group Evie Networks.


 Lismore’s residents are living in limbo on the frontlines of the climate emergency

Christine Tondorf

Only about 20% of businesses have reopened and many have exhausted their savings trying to repair properties


Fines will never replace critical koala habitat destroyed by Forestry Corporation

Nature Conservation Council

Today’s $135,600 fine for destroying koala habitat is more evidence Forestry Corporation is a rogue entity unfit in its current state to manage a resource as important as the state’s public native forests.


Mt Arthur closure: BHP must support workers and communities

Mining And Energy Union

BHP must invest in supporting the thousands of mineworkers at its giant Mt Arthur mine in the Hunter Valley after announcing it intends to close the mine in 2030, the Mining and Energy Union said today.

Market failure: Why no one trusts fossil generators to “do the right thing”

Giles Parkinson

What makes Matt Kean think fossil fuel generators would start to do the right thing now? For the past two decades or more, they have done everything but.


 White lies: Daily Telegraph’s excitement over bumper snow season skates over facts

Graham Readfearn

A cold start to winter has the News Corp newspaper and Sky News telling ‘alarmists’ to chill, but what is really going on with snowfall?



ACT electricity alert eased with blackout risk downgraded

Concerns over electricity supply have been eased for ACT households this evening, with the market operator advising network providers supply was expected to meet demand.


Explainer: Is the ACT going to be hit by the energy crisis? What’s it all mean?

Australia’s east coast is in the midst of an energy crisis, with skyrocketing wholesale prices putting never before seen pressure on the national electricity grid.



Price gouging revealed: Why Queensland’s electricity prices are highest in Australia

Queensland’s energy supply crisis has triggered calls for an inquiry into the state’s surging electricity prices.


South Australia

Kangaroo Island’s dunnarts got hit hard by bushfires. Then the cats came

Feral cats are picking off the endangered dunnarts that weren’t already ravaged by the devastating Christmas Island bushfires.


Energy giant names site for its own Adelaide hydrogen plans [$]

SA’s status as a renewable energy leader could be boosted again with news a group of private firms is moving on big plans of its own.


Tasmania calls for new renewable generation – and load – as first REZ takes shape

Tasmania government launches ROI for new renewables and storage and for businesses seeking renewable electrical loads.


Northern Territory

Once a desert delicacy, Indigenous rangers are now fighting to protect the tjalapa

Burrowed in the spinifex of central Australia, in tunnels running ten metres in diameter, the tjalapa has long been a sacred part of the tjukurrpa for those on Country.


How climate change is turning remote Indigenous houses into dangerous hot boxes

In remote Indigenous communities that are already very hot and socioeconomically disadvantaged, climate change is driving inequities even further.


Why are solar farms in the NT sitting idle and generating zero power?

Four solar farms in the Northern Territory are sitting idle, years after construction.


Western Australia

‘No more land grabbing’: Why a hard-won battle in WA’s remote outback may be celebrated across the country

After 20 years fighting for justice, Daisy Tjuparntarri Ward and other traditional owners celebrate a native title determination at the Pila Nature Reserve that may renew hope for First Nations people across the country.


Fast train between Perth and South West could run on gas

A key step has been reached in the push for a faster passenger rail link between Perth and WA’s major tourism and food region as power sources for the train are investigated.


Forrest signs up monster German EVs to start ditching diesel in the Pilbara

Fortescue and Liebherr will integrate technology developed by Williams Advanced Engineering, an offshoot of the Williams Formula One racing team specialising in electrification that Fortescue bought in January for $237 million.


WA’s challenge to keep the lights on with more solar and less coal

The Australian Energy Market Operator’s annual review of the power system serving WA’s populous South West predicted a need for new generation from 2025 and more than 300 megawatts by 2031.


If successful, the plan to ‘rebalance’ Perth’s groundwater will still see wetlands dwindle

People have cleared, filled and drained 70 to 80 per cent of all wetlands on the Swan Coastal Plains, but the remaining lakes still face great ecological loss in a warming climate.


Perth’s ancient shrimp link to Gondwana presumed lost

The water loss at Loch McNess and the caves of Yanchep National Park have been dramatic over the past 20 years.



11M social enterprises exist globally – and all share a similar story

A first-of-its-kind report into how many social enterprises there are worldwide has just been released, revealing many similarities exist between businesses in the sector – no matter where in the world they are based.


World’s worst air pollution slashes 7 years off life expectancy in Bangladesh

Air pollution in Bangladesh is the worst in the world, a new study shows, reducing the average Bangladeshi’s life expectancy by 6.7 years.


Most of the world agreed on safe PCB waste disposal. It’s not going great—especially in the US.

A majority of countries are not on track to remove the toxic pollutants known as PCBs from the environment by the 2028 global Stockholm Convention goal, according to a new study.


Children at particular risk of climate change, air pollution effects: analysis

Infants, children and unborn babies are uniquely vulnerable to the impacts of both climate change and air pollution, experts argued in a new scientific analysis. 


Humans responsible for over 90% of world’s oil slicks

Scientists mapping oil pollution across the Earth’s oceans have found that more than 90% of chronic oil slicks come from human sources, a much higher proportion than previously estimated.


Who wants to be a billionaire? Most don’t — which is good news for the planet

A new study busts the long-held economic belief that humans are all motivated to want more and more, which could have important implications for sustainability policies.


Nature Conservation

 There is a war on nature. Dom Phillips was killed trying to warn you about it

Jonathan Watts

Bruno Pereira highlighted the ravaging of the rainforest and abuse of human rights. Dom told his story. We should honour them


What a dying lake says about the future

Paul Krugman

If we can’t save the Great Salt Lake, what chance do we have of saving the planet?



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