Sunday 17 December 2017                                                                                                           

How global warming fueled five extreme weather events
Scientists analyzed 27 extreme weather events from 2016 and found that global warming was a “significant driver” for most of them. We look at five cases.
https://www.nytimes.com/2017/12/14/climate/climate-extreme-weather-attribution.html

Climate change: UN, Trump not the only players that matter. We all do.
We do not need to be participating in the UN climate talks in Bonn to increase our knowledge, and take responsibility for helping change the world.
http://www.democratandchronicle.com/story/opinion/editorials/2017/11/16/editorial-climate-change-everyones-problem-trump-united-nations/866289001/

How global warming fueled five extreme weather events
Scientists analyzed 27 extreme weather events from 2016 and found that global warming was a “significant driver” for most of them. We look at five cases.
https://www.nytimes.com/2017/12/14/climate/climate-extreme-weather-attribution.html

Through global warming, we’re now creating new types of extreme weather events, with dire results
It’s not just you, it’s all of us.
http://mashable.com/2017/12/14/humans-creating-new-extreme-weather-events-global-warming-study/#8gCCLhFGBkqi

China’s only real shot at stopping climate change needs carbon capture
Akshat Rathi
The world’s biggest emitter will be the acid-test for the technology that could save the world from catastrophic climate change.
https://qz.com/1157788/china-is-the-acid-test-for-a-technology-that-could-save-the-world-from-catastrophic-climate-change/

Groundbreaking Australian Murray–Darling water agreement in peril
Report warns that without major changes, environment plan will fail.
https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-017-08428-6

We’re too attached to human remains. Let them go, we need the space
Terry Sweetman
http://www.couriermail.com.au/rendezview/were-too-attached-to-human-remains-let-them-go-we-need-the-space/news-story/3af98566a6c1207ec4b2ade9ea449b30

Irrigation in Murray Darling Basin is about more than politics
Daryl Hoey
Water ministers will meet in Albury on Tuesday to decide the fate of thousands of family farms and small towns in the southern Murray Darling Basin.
http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/opinion/irrigation-in-murray-darling-basin-is-about-more-than-politics/news-story/1c9130c42d286c10743699faea86af66

The brainchild of a NSW millionaire, is this the world’s first solar train?
A refurbished 70-year-old ‘red rattler’ running on a three-kilometre stretch of disused rail line at the popular tourist destination of Byron Bay is being billed as a world-first.
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-12-16/world-first-solar-train-the-brainchild-of-byron-bay-millionaire/9265522

ACT government spends more than $1.4m cleaning up roadsides
http://www.canberratimes.com.au/act-news/act-government-spends-more-than-14m-cleaning-up-litter-from-the-roadside-20171215-h056z3.html

National Capital Authority pleased with weed-eating goats trial
http://www.canberratimes.com.au/act-news/national-capital-authority-pleased-with-goats-employed-to-rid-lake-burley-griffin-shore-of-weeds-20171215-h056qw.html

Australia’s oldest wombat marks 31st birthday
http://www.canberratimes.com.au/act-news/winnie-australias-oldest-wombat-marks-31st-birthday-20171216-h05sph.html

Outback couple build solar farm to prove need for remote power generation
In Queensland’s Gulf of Carpentaria, one couple has built a solar farm big enough to power their shire in a move to prove the benefit of decentralising electricity and positioning generation sites at the end of the grid.
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-12-16/electric-love-couple-build-solar-farm-normantion-qld/9247076

Recycled bag initiative is “sew” good for the Far North’s environment
The Cairns and Far North Environment Centre and more than 100 volunteers have been busy stitching together about 700 free reusable bags, made from recycled materials, in anticipation of single-use lightweight plastic shopping bags being banned statewide from July 1, 2018.
https://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/national/recycled-bag-initiative-is-sew-good-for-the-far-norths-environment/news-story/46df0c47d84bd15326b65838ab12d33d

Controversial plan to seal the famous Bloomfield Track to boost tourism and improve road safety
http://www.cairnspost.com.au/news/cairns/controversial-plan-to-seal-the-famous-bloomfield-track-to-boost-tourism-and-improve-road-safety/news-story/8e969b1ba796bc530518d6f6a4ce4dae

Premier Jay Weatherill says the spectre of a royal commission into River Murray water theft is already forcing changes
South Australia’s royal commission into water theft from the River Murray is already forcing change by upstream states and could end up being a federal inquiry, Premier Jay Weatherill says.
http://www.adelaidenow.com.au/news/south-australia/premier-jay-weatherill-says-the-spectre-of-a-royal-commission-into-river-murray-water-theft-is-already-forcing-changes/news-story/25ee48a8fcc8f9ec3290be5a60505707

All aboard for light rail link to airport
Sunday Mail (SA) editorial
Adelaide’s initial 1.2km Glenelg tram extension, which opened a decade ago, unleashed plenty of protest when the project was first revealed.
http://www.adelaidenow.com.au/news/opinion/sunday-mail-editorial-december-17-2017-all-aboard-for-light-rail-link-to-airport/news-story/5010597db1086cab8f49402a686474e7

Burn-offs have almost no effect on bushfire risks, Tasmania study finds
Modelling shows nearly a third of the state would need to be burned to have significant impact on wildfire threat
https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2017/dec/15/burn-offs-bushfire-risks-australia-tasmania

Time to stand up and take ownership
Liz Evans
Minimalist or materialist; hoarder or declutterer; bargain hunter, fashion addict, technology junkie, op shopper or thrifter; all of us are caught up in patterns of consumption, and most of us have more stuff than we need. But what happens when our stuff gets old, worn out or broken? Do we throw it away and buy a new model? Or do we repair it and give it a new lease of life? How much thought do we give to our shopping habits?
http://www.themercury.com.au/lifestyle/tasweekend-time-to-stand-up-and-take-ownership/news-story/684666ef84667e1e8d96cc35014f46e0

‘Dummy spit’: Coal mining giant refuses Fair Work recommendation
http://www.watoday.com.au/wa-news/dummy-spit-coal-mining-giant-refuses-fair-work-recommendation-20171215-h05occ.html

Smoke from wildfires may be surprisingly deadly, scientists report
The culprit appears to be small particles released by combustion, researchers say.
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/energy-environment/wp/2017/12/15/smoke-from-wildfires-may-be-surprisingly-deadly-scientists-report/?utm_term=.2611d6502246

Hanford PFP workers maybe exposed to airborne radiation
CH2M stops demolition work at Hanford nuclear reservation’s Plutonium Finishing Plant after workers might have inhaled airborne radioactive particles.
http://www.tri-cityherald.com/news/local/hanford/article189867139.html

Fueling dissent: How the oil industry set out to undercut clean air
After casting doubt on climate change for decades, skeptic consultants have turned their attention to air pollution.
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/dec/14/fueling-dissent-how-the-oil-industry-set-out-to-undercut-clean-air

U.S. solar installations to fall more than expected in 2017
U.S. solar installations will fall more than expected this year, according to an industry report released on Thursday, due to weakened demand for residential systems and delays on large projects over concerns that President Donald Trump will impose tariffs on imported panels, increasing costs.
https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-solar/u-s-solar-installations-to-fall-more-than-expected-in-2017-idUSKBN1E80GZ

Hungary plans big boost in solar power generation
Hungary will relax rules on the construction of small solar power plants and subsidize loans to landowners as part of efforts to promote renewable energy, a government official said on Thursday.
https://www.reuters.com/article/us-hungary-energy-solar/hungary-plans-big-boost-in-solar-power-generation-idUSKBN1E82HP

In 10 years’ time trains could be solar powered
A technique has been devised that allows electricity to flow directly from solar panels to electrified train tracks to the trains themselves making solar powered trains more feasible than ever before
https://www.theguardian.com/science/political-science/2017/dec/14/in-10-years-time-trains-could-solar-powered

What’s behind the rise of minimalist living?
In recent years, the rise of the minimalist movement has seen many people embark on a quest to learn to live with less stuff. So do minimalists, voluntary simplifiers or downshifters know something we don’t?
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-12-16/whats-behind-the-rise-in-minimalist-living/9258084

Plans for major nuclear power station in Wales win green light
Office for Nuclear Regulation approves design for new reactor at Horizon Nuclear Power’s plant at Wylfa, Anglesey
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/dec/14/plans-for-major-nuclear-power-station-in-wales-win-green-light-wylfa-anglesey

Frequent fires can irreparably harm even the most resilient ecosystems
Fires can be rejuvenating for some ecosystems. But as wildfires increase in frequency and severity, those ecosystems could see could their soil fertility and carbon capture depleted.
https://psmag.com/environment/frequent-fires-can-irreparably-harm-even-the-most-resilient-ecosystems

‘Explore lightly’: Palau makes all visitors sign pledge to respect environment
International arrivals must sign promise to children of Pacific nation that they will ‘tread lightly, act kindly’ during their stay.
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/dec/15/explore-lightly-palau-makes-all-visitors-sign-pledge-to-respect-environment

Soils reveal a hidden cost of farming, and fertilizers
For every ton of fertilizer farmers apply to fields in the United States, almost 1,200 pounds is wasted due to inefficiency, with almost 400 pounds of that waste flushing into streams and aquifers.
http://www.ehn.org/how-fertilizer-ends-up-in-montana-drinking-water-2517193222.html

Building a refuge where trawlers now ravage Cambodia’s marine life
In Cambodia’s Kep Archipelago, fleets of trawlers dragging weighted, electrified nets have reduced the area’s once sprawling seagrass meadows to a sludgy underwater wasteland and sent fisheries into a tailspin.
https://news.mongabay.com/2017/12/building-a-refuge-where-trawlers-now-ravage-cambodias-marine-life/

Can technology replace the need for shark nets and drumlines?
Are drones and tracking apps the future frontline of shark defence?
http://www.abc.net.au/news/science/2017-12-16/can-technology-replace-shark-nets/9231922

Mercury from industrialized nations is polluting the Arctic – here’s how it gets there
Daniel Obrist
How do mercury emissions from industrialized countries reach the remote Arctic? Recent research shows that plants on the tundra absorb mercury vapor through their leaves, then pass it into soil.
https://theconversation.com/mercury-from-industrialized-nations-is-polluting-the-arctic-heres-how-it-gets-there-84253

The things you shouldn’t say at your next Christmas bash
Gina Barreca
http://www.smh.com.au/comment/the-things-you-shouldnt-say-at-your-next-christmas-bash-20171215-h056tp.html