THURSDAY 11 JANUARY 2018

Climate scientists unlock secrets of ‘blue carbon’
Results from soil survey could bolster efforts to monitor and protect wetlands around the globe.
https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-018-00018-4

It’s not the heat, it’s the humidity
Extreme heat can be not just uncomfortable but deadly. Heat waves are expected to become more frequent, more severe, and longer with climate change.
http://www.anthropocenemagazine.org/2018/01/its-not-the-heat-its-the-humidity-really/

Four climate change lawsuits to watch in 2018
Did you know it’s possible to take legal action to fight global warming? Ever more citizens are doing just that. Here are four landmark climate change lawsuits with significant decisions pending in 2018.
http://www.dw.com/en/four-climate-change-lawsuits-to-watch-in-2018/a-42066735

HKBU and CUHK discovered that human-perceived temperature is rising faster than actual air temperature
https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2018-01/hkbu-hac010918.php

UK data agency destroys Breitbart’s climate science attacks with evidence
A British government-backed research project has hit back at climate science deniers who wrongly accused their scientists of faking findings.
https://independentaustralia.net/environment/environment-display/uk-data-agency-destroys-breitbarts-climate-science-attacks-with-evidence,11093

The only force that can beat climate change is the U.S. Army
Anatol Lieven
Climate change isn’t just a political problem; it’s a security threat.
http://foreignpolicy.com/2018/01/09/the-only-force-that-can-beat-climate-change-is-the-u-s-army/

CSIRO dives deeper than ever before for answers on climate
Scientists will use sea robots to investigate deeper into the Southern Ocean than ever before in the pursuit of information about the planet’s climate.
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-01-10/csiro-dives-deep-for-answers-on-climate-with-argo/9316880

Charities warn Australia’s foreign donation laws will strangle advocacy
Australian Conservation Foundation and St Vincent de Paul Society are part of coalition of charities formed to fight restrictions on political advocacy
https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2018/jan/11/charities-warn-australias-foreign-donation-laws-will-strangle-advocacy

Minerals Council pushes for an end to ‘rigid’ industrial laws
Australia’s big miners want changes to workplace laws and environmental approvals and an end to the ban on nuclear power.
http://www.afr.com/news/minerals-council-pushes-for-an-end-to-rigid-industrial-laws-20180110-h0g3x1

Miners dig in to overturn nuclear power ban
Mining giants will lobby the Turnbull Government to dump a ban on nuclear power to help keep the lights on and bankroll the country
http://www.couriermail.com.au/news/queensland/miners-dig-in-to-overturn-nuclear-power-ban/news-story/104e9dd6376e3d3ff6c98e014d6e1b35

Coal stays top of heap in China
Li Xiyong is so confident of the future of Australia’s coal industry that he is investing $2bn in it.
http://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/mining-energy/li-xiyong-coal-to-stay-top-of-energy-heap-in-china/news-story/5dbf6f6774160e2384cf279989c66d53

Unmasking Malcolm: The Big 5 Policy Failures of 2017
Ben Eltham
The myth of the moderate Malcolm Turnbull dies hard, writes Ben Eltham. Will 2018 be any different?
https://newmatilda.com/2018/01/09/unmasking-malcolm-the-big-5-policy-failures-of-2017/

A future without coal-fired power stations is inevitable
Peter Martin
Worried the electricity system won’t keep up over summer? Worry about coal, seriously.
https://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/opinion/a-future-without-coalfired-power-stations-is-inevitable-20180110-h0g47v.html

Coal still underwrites development
David Uren
Australian exports will continue to better the lives of millions in industrialising states.
http://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/opinion/david-uren-economics/coal-still-underwrites-development-of-our-planet/news-story/162037ead8cfcb07cf1326b70d984610

Goulburn Murray Water cuts its delivery losses
Victoria’s largest water corporation, Goulburn Murray Water, has cut its water delivery losses by a staggering 400 gigalitres, worth about $1.2 billion.
http://www.weeklytimesnow.com.au/news/water/goulburn-murray-water-cuts-its-delivery-losses/news-story/54be6abed2f4acde0ae512bd0bc5e77a

Hoddle Street locals appalled as trees chopped down for roadworks
http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/hoddle-street-locals-appalled-as-trees-chopped-down-for-roadworks-20180110-h0gfmu.html

‘Worse than Liddell’: Another coal-fired plant starts tripping
Loy Yang A station has had six failures of one of its units in the past three weeks, placing added strain on the power grid and prompting a call for fossil fuel plants to be set the same reliability standards being considered for renewable energy suppliers.
http://www.theage.com.au/environment/worse-than-liddell-another-coalfired-power-plant-develops-conniptions-20180110-h0g9y4

Victorian grazing licences: Riparian rip-offs
Weekly Times editorial
There’s an old saying that a promise is not a promise when it comes from the mouth of a politician. Environment Minister Lily D’Ambrosio has once again proven the stereotype by promising no Victorian farmers would be forced to fence off crown-land water frontages
http://www.weeklytimesnow.com.au/news/opinion/victorian-grazing-licences-riparian-ripoffs/news-story/8cab37fc3181e64278da6ee5a0d73e09

Investigation urged to see if council’s $18m for Adani airstrip followed due process
The Local Government Department is asked to investigate a north Queensland council’s decision to fund a private airstrip in the Galilee Basin for Adani fly-in, fly-out workers.
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-01-10/adani-$18m-private-airstrip-asked-to-be-investigated-ccc/9318742

Tesla set to build world’s biggest battery yet in Queensland
The developers of the world’s biggest lithium-ion battery project may surpass their own record as French renewable-energy developer Neoen looks into building another huge unit near Cairns.
http://www.afr.com/business/energy/wind-energy/new-tesla-neoen-deal-would-make-the-worlds-biggest-battery-yet–in-queensland-20180110-h0gjww

Southbound Irukandji could mean trouble for south-east Qld tourism
Deadly Irukandji jellyfish are drifting further south along Queensland’s coastline and could eventually put the Gold and Sunshine Coast’s tourism industries at risk, an expert has warned.
https://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/national/queensland/southbound-irukandji-could-mean-trouble-for-south-east-queensland-tourism-20180110-p4yydr.html

A month in, Tesla’s SA battery is surpassing expectations
Dylan McConnell, University of Melbourne
http://theconversation.com/a-month-in-teslas-sa-battery-is-surpassing-expectations-89770

Climate report shows above average temperatures, below average rainfall for Tas last year
http://www.themercury.com.au/news/tasmania/climate-report-shows-above-average-temperatures-below-average-rainfall-for-tas-last-year/news-story/a0f9de83b3f7815c972a064491d883ab

Call to cure Tasmania’s lagging infrastructure
A failure to spend big dollars on key infrastructure threatens to trip Tasmania up over the next four years, say regional development experts
http://www.themercury.com.au/business/call-to-cure-tasmanias-lagging-infrastructure/news-story/52da12b28720045c80687f3d91bd3e36

Molyhil open cut project life expectancy extended to 7 years
The Territory mining industry has received another major boost with the announcement that the proposed Molyhil tungsten and molybdenum project in Central Australia has had its life extended by 17 per cent to seven years.
http://www.ntnews.com.au/business/molyhil-open-cut-project-life-expectancy-extended-to-7-years/news-story/68bc5bb07dba93dec8d4614f6d43f9b3

Yellow alert for WA’s north as cyclone bears down
http://www.watoday.com.au/wa-news/yellow-alert-for-kimberley-and-pilbara-as-cyclone-bears-down-20180110-h0ggyg.html

This weed killer is wreaking havoc on America’s crops
Is Monsanto profiting off the problem?
http://www.motherjones.com/environment/2018/01/dicamba-monsanto-herbicide-neighbor-farms-soybeans/

Trump and Rick Perry’s coal bailout is dead
Energy commissioners, including four appointed by the president, unanimously rejected the proposal.
https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2018/01/trumps-coal-bailout-is-dead/550037/

It’s the same story under Trump as under Obama: Coal is losing out to natural gas
By 2019, a federal energy report forecasts, natural gas will provide 34 percent of U.S. electricity and coal 28 percent — making gas the top fuel for electricity generation, a role held by coal as recently as 2015.
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/energy-environment/wp/2018/01/09/its-the-same-story-under-trump-as-under-obama-coal-is-losing-out-to-natural-gas/?utm_term=.e27865c4c91c

Clean energy sources manage to cut electricity bill in Chile
A 75 percent drop in electricity rates, thanks to a quadrupled clean generation capacity, is one of the legacies to be left in Chile by the administration of Michelle Bachelet, who steps down on March 11.
http://www.ipsnews.net/2018/01/clean-energy-sources-manage-cut-electricity-bill-chile/

Further reducing injections of oilfield wastewater can prevent larger earthquakes
Increased seismic activity has occurred simultaneously with the increased retrieval of unconventional oil and gas, which uses hydrofracturing, commonly referred to as fracking
https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2018-01/vt-fri011018.php

Harnessing the power of algae: New, greener fuel cells move step closer to reality
A new design of algae-powered fuel cells that is five times more efficient than existing plant and algal models, as well as being potentially more cost-effective to produce and practical to use, has been developed by researchers at the University of Cambridge.
https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2018-01/uoc-htp011018.php

The resistance to Trump will be local
Bill McKibben
Strong community makes it harder to win by being a jerk and a bully.
https://www.thenation.com/article/the-resistance-to-trump-will-be-local/

The future of fracking: Keep it in the ground
Guardian editorial
The rewards are uncertain and time limited. Massive investment in a short-lived fuel may not make business sense.
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/jan/09/the-guardian-view-on-the-future-of-fracking-keep-it-in-the-ground

Honey bees’ attraction to fungicide “unsettling” for food output: Study
Honey bees are attracted to a fungicide used in agriculture with “unsettling implications” for global food production, a scientist said on Tuesday
https://www.reuters.com/article/agriculture-bees-fungicide/honey-bees-attraction-to-fungicide-unsettling-for-food-output-study-idUSL8N1P4442

Worldwide Importance of Honey Bees for Natural Habitats Captured in New Report
An unprecedented study integrating data from around the globe has shown that honey bees are the world’s most important …
https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/01/180110101005.htm

Zinke removing Florida from offshore drilling plan
“I am removing Florida from consideration for any new oil and gas platforms,” Trump’s Interior secretary says.
http://thehill.com/homenews/administration/368208-zinke-to-take-florida-out-of-offshore-drilling-plan

Iranian tanker carrying $US60m worth of oil ‘could burn for a month’
The stricken Iranian oil tanker in the East China Sea could burn for as long as one month, South Korea’s Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries says.
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-01-10/iranian-oil-tanker-could-burn-for-a-month/9318308

Paradise under pressure
The fences protecting the unique biodiversity of Maui’s Kipahulu Reserve have helped to keep invasive species at bay, but climate change is now carrying new threats up its slopes.
http://www.biographic.com/posts/sto/paradise-under-pressure

Warming oceans could scupper marine food system – scientists
Temperature rises could have “serious implications” for fish stocks, said one of the study’s authors.
http://news.trust.org/item/20180109190027-3iazl/

Brazil 2018: Amazon under attack, resistance grows, courts to act, elections
In 2018, expect more Amazon assaults by the Temer administration, as indigenous and environmental resistance builds, with court rulings and October elections adding uncertainty.
https://news.mongabay.com/2018/01/brazil-2018-amazon-under-attack-resistance-grows-courts-to-act-elections/

Shipping noise drowning out Auckland fish chatter
A new study has revealed shipping noise in the Hauraki Gulf is causing major communication problems for some whales and fish.
https://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/347843/shipping-noise-drowning-out-auckland-fish-chatter

Bangladeshi forests stripped bare as Rohingya refugees battle to survive
650,000 Rohingya refugees were forced from Myanmar to bordering Bangladesh in a matter of weeks in late 2017, creating an environmental crisis in the sensitive border region.
https://news.mongabay.com/2018/01/bangladeshi-forests-stripped-bare-as-rohingya-refugees-battle-to-survive/

Strong Support for Ocean Protection: Study
People around the world strongly support ocean conservation measures, according to a new study of public perceptions of marine threats and …
https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/01/180110101008.htm

New round of oil drilling goes deeper into Ecuador’s Yasuní national park
State oil company starts second phase of drilling in one of the world’s most biodiverse hotspots
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/jan/10/new-round-of-oil-drilling-goes-deeper-into-ecuadors-yasuni-national-park

New discovery may explain winter weight gain
We may have a new reason, in addition to vitamin D generation, to bask in a little sunshine. A breakthrough has shown the fat cells that lie just beneath our skin shrink when exposed to the blue light emitted by the sun.
https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/01/180110113007.htm