WEDNESDAY 3 JANUARY 2018

The most consequential environmental stories of 2017
These nine events in 2017 could shape the world for years to come.
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/energy-environment/wp/2017/12/27/the-most-consequential-environmental-stories-of-2017/?utm_term=.a9c22827571a

An illustrated agenda for change in 2018
Visual storyteller Ariel Aberg-Riger asks 10 people leading city change: How can we do better?
https://www.citylab.com/life/2018/01/how-can-your-city-do-better-in-2018/549449/

Curbing climate change
Study finds strong rationale for the human factor
https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2018-01/nifm-ccc122917.php

It’s not too late: A climate change New Year’s resolution
Technology exists to stop the growth of greenhouse gas emissions by 2020 and avoid the worst of climate change, scientists say. What’s missing is the ambition.
https://insideclimatenews.org/news/02012018/emissions-peak-paris-resolution-2017-year-review-climate-change-global-warming-technology-renewable-energy-evs

On its hundredth birthday in 1959, Edward Teller warned the oil industry about global warming
Benjamin Franta
Somebody cut the cake – new documents reveal that American oil writ large was warned of global warming at its 100th birthday party.
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/climate-consensus-97-per-cent/2018/jan/01/on-its-hundredth-birthday-in-1959-edward-teller-warned-the-oil-industry-about-global-warming

Murray River wakeboard ban won’t wash
Residents along the Murray River will take to the streets to protest if a proposed wakeboarding ban goes ahead.
http://www.weeklytimesnow.com.au/news/national/murray-river-wakeboard-ban-wont-wash/news-story/ab68ea20c3b12ed016b8302a3cebd709

Australian towns going off the grid
http://www.theage.com.au/business/the-economy/australian-towns-going-off-the-grid-20171219-p4yxvv.html

Carbon war: Abbott fires up for battle
Malcolm Turnbull is facing a backlash from conservatives such as Tony Abbott, who say his energy policy is a ‘carbon tax’ by stealth.
http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/climate/carbon-war-tony-abbott-fires-up-for-battle/news-story/f6caa19237dcab70b5e2bc37eac59d1f

Retailer banks on coal power
Retailer Alinta will use coal-fired power to generate significant savings for its customers
http://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/mining-energy/alinta-says-coalfired-power-will-generate-savings/news-story/6d59434da2cc083ea2ccaafac169a70a

Success no pipe dream for APA
Eric Johnston
The nation’s energy crunch is playing out on equity markets in many ways, with obvious winners emerging.
http://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/opinion/apa-a-big-winner-from-energy-crunch/news-story/588b20974ca460425462619527754ebc

A high price for policy failure: the ten-year story of spiralling electricity bills
David Blowers, Grattan Institute
Most Australians’ power bills have been rising for a decade. There are many reasons why, but the common thread is a lack of government willingness to get to grips with crucial policy problems.
https://theconversation.com/a-high-price-for-policy-failure-the-ten-year-story-of-spiralling-electricity-bills-89450

CFA issues haystack fire warning as heatwave looms
Hot and humid conditions have combined to provide a perfect storm for haystack fires this summer.
http://www.weeklytimesnow.com.au/news/national/cfa-issues-haystack-fire-warning-as-heatwave-looms/news-story/244e6da2fa821d73cfe0322b85debafb

Deer hunters make a noise over silencer ban
A draft report from a parliamentary inquiry into the Control of Invasive Animals recommended that the Government consult with Victoria Police to allow certain categories of hunters access to gun noise suppressors (silencers).
http://www.weeklytimesnow.com.au/news/national/deer-hunters-make-a-noise-over-silencer-ban/news-story/12c82ddc8bf954ed200039a6a7fe3823

Exxon hopes for big Bass gas find
Oil major ExxonMobil has flagged a new Bass Strait gas development near the oil region’s first discovery.
http://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/mining-energy/exxon-hopes-for-big-bass-strait-gas-find/news-story/9333bbdb513d710d48ff76e994aa3212

Roofs ripped off as storm tears through the NSW north coast
Severe thunderstorms cause widespread damage on the NSW north coast, bringing down powerlines and ripping roofs off buildings.
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-01-02/severe-storm-wreaks-havoc-on-the-nsw-north-coast/9299302

How a Dubbo sperm bank could safeguard the future of the Great Barrier Reef
Thousands of kilometres from the Great Barrier Reef researchers are stockpiling billions of cryogenically frozen coral sperm samples in the hopes of preserving species and one day growing coral babies to replant on the reef.
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-01-02/dubbo-coral-sperm-bank-could-help-safeguard-great-barrier-reef/9290188

Gupta buys NSW coal mine from Glencore
British billionaire Sanjeev Gupta has expanded his Australian operations once again, buying a coal mine to support the Arrium steel business.
http://www.afr.com/business/mining/coal/sanjeev-gupta

Twenty NSW beaches, two national parks at ‘extreme risk’, report finds
http://www.smh.com.au/nsw/twenty-nsw-beaches-national-parks-at-extreme-risk-report-finds-20180102-h0cllg.html

Adani megamine: Anti-coal activists bungle Abbot Point train protest
Labelled as clueless and anarchists, activists yesterday boarded the wrong train to Abbot Point in their bid to curb climate change and highlight the impact of the planned Adani mine. And the cost to Queensland from delays in developing the megamine are now estimated at $700,000 a day in royalties.
http://www.couriermail.com.au/news/queensland/adani-megamine-anticoal-activists-bungle-abbot-point-train-protest/news-story/d249b83ae8e5fa747411a479269150b5

It’s not just those living in the Adelaide Hills that need a bushfire plan
Cara Jenkin
In every major bushfire in South Australia we learn something new about how to prepare better for the next bushfire
http://www.adelaidenow.com.au/news/opinion/cara-jenkin-its-not-just-those-living-in-the-adelaide-hills-that-need-a-bushfire-plan/news-story/90933b1b5e5abb1db48b978f65befb05

Hobart cyclists capture close call with campervan on camera
The State Government says it’s taking action to better protect cyclists, after a campervan struck two riders outside Richmond on New Year’s Day.
http://www.themercury.com.au/news/tasmania/hobart-cyclists-capture-close-call-with-campervan-on-camera/news-story/67d241f50c4126031f70133f47a123ca

Rolling coverage: Bushfire at George Town now under control
http://www.examiner.com.au/story/5147401/rolling-coverage-bushfire-at-george-town-now-under-control/?cs=95

WA Premier defends mining ban despite blow to jobs
WA Premier Mark McGowan has defended a decision which scuttles iron ore mining in the Yilgarn region despite the threat to 400 jobs.
http://www.afr.com/business/wa-premier-mark-mcgowan-defends-iron-ore-mining-ban-on-green-grounds-20180102-h0ce8d

Lower gas price in the pipeline
US investors wagered on a natural gas rally last year but it never came. Instead, prices plunged 21 per cent.
http://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/wall-street-journal/lower-gas-prices-may-be-in-the-pipeline/news-story/76a9ec92bc96edd9f2ba6862411f22cf

The most consequential environmental stories of 2017
These nine events in 2017 could shape the world for years to come.
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/energy-environment/wp/2017/12/27/the-most-consequential-environmental-stories-of-2017/?utm_term=.a9c22827571a

Leaking Hanford tank to be closed
Hanford Tank AY-102, the nuclear reservation’s oldest double shell tank, will be closed rather than repaired following an inspection that found pitting and leaks in its inner shell, according to DOE.
http://www.tri-cityherald.com/news/local/hanford/article192462564.html

Fighting climate change, one laundry load at a time
Experts in the study of fungi are playing a bigger role in improving laundry detergents and, by extension, leading efforts to cut energy use.
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/01/01/business/energy-environment/climate-change-enzymes-laundry.html

A fossil fuel technology that doesn’t pollute
Process can use coal, shale gas and biomass while consuming carbon dioxide
https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2018-01/osu-aff010218.php

Tweaking quantum dots powers-up double-pane solar windows
Engineered quantum dots could bring down the cost of solar electricity
https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2018-01/danl-tqd010218.php

Growing plants with ‘speed breeding’ could be the key to feed the world’s exploding population
Scientists were able to grow plants so quickly that one colleague couldn’t believe it.
http://www.newsweek.com/growing-plants-speed-breeding-could-be-key-feed-worlds-exploding-population-767450

R&D best defence against warming
Bjorn Lomborg
Make green power cheaper than fossil fuels and we are all impelled to switch.
http://www.theaustralian.com.au/opinion/columnists/bjorn-lomborg/green-energy-rd-the-best-defence-against-warming/news-story/1afcd89b57e39a86e3b11f317ab3e35e

The sunny optimism of clean energy shines through tech’s gloom
Clive Thompson
Is there anyplace where the tech news is radiant with old-fashioned optimism? Where good cheer abounds? Why, yes, there is: clean energy.
https://www.wired.com/story/the-sunny-optimism-of-clean-energy-shines-through-techs-gloom/

Call for action to tackle threat to a global biodiversity hotspot
Scientists call for action to tackle an invasive tree species
https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2018-01/bu-cfa122117.php

Why we shouldn’t be too quick to blame migratory animals for global disease
Alice Risely, Deakin University; Bethany J Hoye, University of Wollongong, and Marcel Klaassen
Migratory animals are often blamed for the global spread of disease. However, recent research indicates they may not be the primary culprit.
https://theconversation.com/why-we-shouldnt-be-too-quick-to-blame-migratory-animals-for-global-disease-87438