Monday 18 December 2017

The eco guide to not buying stuff
What do you give to the person who has everything? How about nothing?
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/dec/17/the-eco-guide-to-not-buying-stuff

Why has one of the world’s biggest funders of environmental conservation also given $4 million to a climate denial group?
The Pew Charitable Trusts, one of the world’s biggest funders of environmental conservation groups, has given almost $5 million since 2011 to an organization that rejects the overwhelming evidence that human-caused climate change is dangerous, DeSmog has found.
https://www.desmogblog.com/2017/12/14/pew-charitable-trusts-funding-climate-denial-texas-public-policy-foundation-hartnett-white

Washington Monthly’s Hot Takes: The top climate stories of 2017
https://washingtonmonthly.com/2017/12/17/hot-takes-the-top-climate-stories-of-2017/

Power to the people: Fall in brutal electricity prices
The brutal rise in electricity prices rocking household budgets this year will halt mid-2018, with the start of an average 12 per cent fall.
http://www.news.com.au/finance/money/budgeting/dip-in-electricity-price-rollercoaster-but-not-for-everyone/news-story/6054f2c8efa8322be71fd0a603b109c2

Controversial Abbott-era climate fund will survive climate review
http://www.theage.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/controversial-abbottera-climate-fund-will-survive-climate-review-josh-frydenberg-20171214-h04pnq.html

Agricultural cycle on fire: Australian farmland returns closing in on 17 per cent
Australia is in the sweet spot in the agricultural cycle and farmland returns are showing that.
http://www.afr.com/real-estate/agricultural-cycle-on-fire-australian-farmland-returns-closing-in-on-17-per-cent-20171214-h04t9k

Clean coal must be in energy mix
David Byers
On all three goals of cost, reliability and emissions, there’s a case for high-efficiency low-emission coal to be part of the energy mix.
http://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/opinion/rejecting-clean-coal-is-like-scoring-own-goal/news-story/c7ea870f7bbdc82488bd1b2d351fc227

Climate change and summer sports
Romy Stephens
For any Australian sporting enthusiast, summer means cricket at the MCG, watching the world’s best tennis players at the Australian Open or simply appreciating the outdoors as you play sport yourself. But no matter what you are doing, it’s always extremely hot. What will happen to our sporting calendar as the climate continues to warm? I fear cancellation of sport events could become commonplace.
http://www.examiner.com.au/story/5121559/ignore-climate-change-and-sacrifice-your-summer-sport/?cs=97

Australia’s tax system helps fund some activist groups engaging in illegal activity
Stephen Galilee
How many times have you watched activists trespass onto a public monument or corporate building to unfurl a banner calling for the end of whatever it is they’re upset about, and thought, “Whatever … just ignore them and they’ll go away”. Well guess what? You’re probably helping to pay for their illegal actions.
https://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/opinion/australias-tax-system-helps-fund-some-activist-groups-engaging-in-illegal-activity/news-story/762f64e1c98e9d111359837eb79b1b28

Popular Victorian waterways closed due to blue-green algae
Three Victorian waterways popular with summer holiday-makers are all likely to be off limits this Christmas-New Year period after they were closed due to blue-green algal blooms.
http://www.weeklytimesnow.com.au/news/national/popular-victorian-waterways-closed-due-to-bluegreen-algae/news-story/0140da6bfd9a1ed92ce472eecb417d52

Heyfield timber mill purchase cost Victorian taxpayers $50.6m
http://www.weeklytimesnow.com.au/news/politics/heyfield-timber-mill-purchase-cost-victorian-taxpayers-506m/news-story/c59ebab3fbb4ff4fe760ced92cfe5c50

Heart Morass contamination fears: Duck hunters wants more chemical tests
Duck hunters are calling for more testing for chemical contamination from the Royal Australian Air Force Base at East Sale in Gippsland, before duck season opens in March.
http://www.weeklytimesnow.com.au/news/national/heart-morass-contamination-fears-duck-hunters-wants-more-chemical-tests/news-story/33a7d81b8eda76619f45df7f29473c1c

Australian Energy Market Commission forecasts electricity prices rises for Victorians in 2018
THE shutdown of Hazelwood power station is being blamed as electricity bills in Victoria are expected to soar 16 per cent next year.
http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/victoria/australian-energy-market-commission-forecasts-electricity-prices-rises-for-victorians-in-2018/news-story/dd6bd1ca44cfafb253eee31479a66cea

Yallourn faces early closure
The Yallourn brown coal power station in the Latrobe Valley could close early under Victoria’s renewable energy scheme.
http://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/mining-energy/yallourn-coal-plant-faces-threat-of-early-closure-under-andrews-ret/news-story/a7735edcd63be47905d1c75e13dc603f

Heartbreaking image of roadkill koala ‘something people had to see’
Wildlife photographer Harrison Warne didn’t enjoy taking this photo, “not one bit”, but he knew it was something people had to see.
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-12-17/photographer-captures-heartbreaking-image-of-koala-road-death/9236262

Concerns raised about congestion from urban in-fill in leafy, lakeside Campbell
http://www.canberratimes.com.au/act-news/concerns-raised-about-congestion-in-campbell-from-urban-infill-within-the-leafy-lakeside-suburb-20171213-h04c57.html

Canberra, it’s going to be hot. This time it’s a ‘severe heatwave’
http://www.canberratimes.com.au/act-news/canberra-set-to-experience-severe-heatwave-according-to-bureau-of-meteorology-20171217-h060a7.html

Endangered wombats in the market for new home, and looking to upsize
Wildlife workers and scientists are searching for a site to house a refuge they hope could help save the critically endangered northern hairy-nosed wombat — and they say time is running out.
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-12-17/wombats-in-the-market-for-a-new-home-to-ensure-survival-qld/9251298

Energy changes to boost savings for southeast Queensland
Households in southeast Queensland are tipped to save $200 during the next two years, with changes to the State Government’s solar bonus scheme to deliver relief for consumers.
http://www.couriermail.com.au/news/queensland/energy-changes-to-boost-savings-for-southeast-queensland/news-story/770e78660cf2999b4270cc0419c9732b

Call for diplomatic intervention after PNG villagers found to have broken treaty to poach dugong
A conflict over wildlife management has emerged between­ Australia and Papua New Guinea, with PNG villagers found to be breaking an international treaty to poach dugongs in the Torres Strait.
http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/national/call-for-diplomatic-intervention-after-png-villagers-found-to-have-broken-treaty-to-poach-dugong/news-story/46317ddca248782e6d61c0a3467564b5

Wildlife activist lashes out at “unknown” finding after two-year investigation of dugong poaching
A wildlife warrior who has been campaigning for nearly a decade to protect dugongs and sea turtles from poachers has accused the Federal Government of turning a blind eye to the practice.
http://www.cairnspost.com.au/news/cairns/wildlife-activist-lashes-out-at-unknown-finding-after-twoyear-investigation-of-dugong-poaching/news-story/0058e96529ed4d1d43c62d802bd1c65c

Sanjeev Gupta secures SA Government energy deal.
Whyalla’s saviour has secured an energy contract potentially worth hundreds of millions of dollars as part of a deal struck with the State Government.
https://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/whyalla-saviour-sanjeev-gupta-secures-multimilliondollar-energy-deal/news-story/ccd1b1d2ecc13449789851a05236da25

Adelaide Airport tram link: Premier Jay Weatherill cool on $500 million plan
http://www.adelaidenow.com.au/news/south-australia/premier-jay-weatherill-cool-on-500-million-plan-for-adelaide-airport-lightrail-link/news-story/38663e5bcc2685e4bc326a0e5883ff4c

Feral deer growth prompts new policy
Fearful farmers are scared to leave family members alone on their own properties because hunters are illegally shooting feral deer.
http://www.adelaidenow.com.au/news/south-australia/growing-numbers-of-poachers-hunting-feral-deer-has-prompted-calls-for-new-government-policy/news-story/edd1b797e7addb306651499eee3da0d2

Water treatment plant proposed for north eastern Tasmania
http://www.examiner.com.au/story/5123418/water-treatment-plant-proposed-for-north-eastern-tasmania/?cs=95

Black paint that stays cool could solve common summer problem
NZ scientists have been given a $1 million to try and develop “cool” black paint.
http://www.news.com.au/technology/innovation/inventions/black-paint-that-stays-cool-could-solve-common-summer-problem/news-story/d512fb1e26ad712049cd8f6a829a0e2c

Critics Of Plant Vogtle say Georgia doesn’t need new nuclear
Next week, Georgia regulators will decide on the future of the country’s only nuclear power construction project. One big issue is how much completing the expansion will cost.
https://www.wabe.org/critics-plant-vogtle-say-georgia-doesnt-need-new-nuclear/

China plans carbon capture trial
A BHP vice-president has discussed plans for the $10 million steel plant program with Beijing.
http://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/mining-energy/china-plans-carbon-capture-trial/news-story/699ed95d5aef31f7426fa6af8c4e37c9

The eco guide to not buying stuff
What do you give to the person who has everything? How about nothing?
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/dec/17/the-eco-guide-to-not-buying-stuff

Venue of last resort: the climate lawsuits threatening the future of big oil
Jie Jenny Zou and Chris Young
In an era of environmental deregulation, groups like the American Petroleum Institute are focusing resources on the courts – and ‘time is on industry’s side’
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/dec/17/big-oil-climate-change-lawsuits-environment

Earthlings, unite: Let’s go to Mars.
Pete Myers
While the author of this op-ed concludes that going to Mars would be a healthy sign that we, as a civilization, are still planning a future, his comment that “it’s an insane proposal” seems closer to the mark. Imagining we can go to Mars at any scale commensurate with the goal of saving civilization distracts from much more important and immediate tasks in front of us, essential to ensuring that some semblance of civilization persists through the coming decades.
http://www.ehn.org/earthlings-unite-lets-go-to-mars-the-new-york-times-2518124619.html

Asiatic cheetahs on the brink of extinction with only 50 left alive
With UN funds being cut this month, conservationists call for last-ditch effort to save animal which clings on only in Iran
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/dec/16/asiatic-cheetah-brink-extinction-iran-un-funding

Africa’s new elite force: women gunning for poachers and fighting for a better life
Abused and disadvantaged mothers and daughters are being honed into a squad of sharpshooters to save wildlife in the Zambezi valley
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/dec/17/poaching-wildlife-africa-conservation-women-barbee-zimbabwe-elephant-rhino

‘A different dimension of loss’: inside the great insect die-off
Scientists have identified 2 million species of living things. No one knows how many more are out there, and tens of thousands may be vanishing before we have even had a chance to encounter them
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/dec/14/a-different-dimension-of-loss-great-insect-die-off-sixth-extinction

Winds fuel California’s third-largest fire
Strong winds that have powered the third-largest wildfire in California’s history are expected to further fuel a blaze that has burned 267,500 acres.
http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/breaking-news/winds-push-california-fire-to-celeb-homes/news-story/5ee4619530ae15adf362047bf9a875c5