THURSDAY 8 MARCH 2018

Climate change tightens grip on US west coast despite progressive aspirations
California, Washington and Oregon have led criticism of Trump’s climate policies, but change hasn’t been easier closer to home
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/mar/07/san-francisco-rising-sea-level-threat-climate-change

Desertification and monsoon climate change linked to shifts in ice volume and sea level
The East Asian summer monsoon and desertification in Eurasia is driven by fluctuating Northern Hemisphere ice volume and global sea level during the Ice Age, as shown in a study published in Nature Communications. Today, two thirds of the world’s population is dependent on agriculture sustained by rains of the East Asian summer monsoon, and future climate change in this region can therefore have a major impact on global food production.
https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2018-03/uu-dam030718.php

Scientists’ warning to humanity ‘most talked about paper’
Twenty-five years after the first World Scientists’ Warning to Humanity, a new report is continuing to gain momentum and is already one of the most talked about papers globally since Altmetric records began. Three letters in comment, as well as a response companion piece by the Warning authors publish today in the peer-reviewed journal BioScience, highlighting two key areas for action in policy and science.
https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2018-03/uos-swt030518.php

Cities emit 60% more carbon than thought in embodied consumption, C40 report says
A new analysis finds that city planners have been under counting greenhouse gas emissions from a key contributor.
https://news.nationalgeographic.com/2018/03/city-consumption-greenhouse-gases-carbon-c40-spd/

‘Lowering our personal carbon footprint is a question of credibility’
Activist Cara Augustenborg says individual action to cut greenhouse gases is essential, but it won’t be enough without political engagement and system change.
http://www.dw.com/en/lowering-our-personal-carbon-footprint-is-a-question-of-credibility/a-42839815

Chilling fact about climate change
Maurice Newman
Recent research suggests a mini ice age may be a greater threat to the planet.
https://www.theaustralian.com.au/opinion/chilling-fact-is-most-climate-change-theories-are-wrong/news-story/3d289daa5d31ec3e93fce74853dc8de0

Corbell slams NEG as “neither ambitious, nor transparent”
Architect of Australia’s most successful renewables policies says proposed National Energy Guarantee lacks ambition, transparency, and won’t hit climate targets.
http://reneweconomy.com.au/corbell-slams-neg-neither-ambitious-transparent-17788/

An Environmentally Turbo Charged Cup
Rubber Cuppy co-founder Jessica Alice talks to Wendy Williams about having an impact on the environment from the first sip, in this month’s spotlight on social enterprise.
https://probonoaustralia.com.au/news/2018/03/environmentally-turbo-charged-cup/

Cooperative Energy Model is the Missing Piece in Puzzle
A genuinely cooperatively owned consumer retailer is the missing part of the energy puzzle in Australia, according to the head of the Business Council of Cooperatives and Mutuals.
https://probonoaustralia.com.au/news/2018/03/cooperative-energy-model-missing-piece-puzzle/

Our love of solar power could soon become a serious problem
Australia is a world leader in the use of rooftop solar power, but some experts believe that with so much power coming online it may soon be worthless — and governments will have little choice but to cut subsidies.
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-03-07/solar-power-what-happens-when-theres-too-much/9522192

ACF probed for Adani trip 
The charities regulator has been asked to investigate Bill Shorten’s $17,000 Adani tour funded by the ACF.
https://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/charities-watchdog-eyes-acf-over-bill-shortens-adani-trip/news-story/ff6ecabf69dabfe49c26f1f39f49893d

Kangaroo doco ‘seriously flawed’ 
Several people interviewed in a new documentary criticising the kangaroo-meat industry had been panned by experts.
https://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/nation/kangaroo-documentary-activists-panned-over-misleading-analysis/news-story/ed9104484fbfac1c1abcfc0e9dea9ce1

Why aren’t Australia’s environment laws preventing widespread land clearing?
Samantha Hepburn, Deakin University
Australia has national environment laws – the Environment Protection Biodiversity Conservation Act (EPBC Act). Yet given the staggering rates of land clearing taking place, resulting in the extinction and endangerment of plants and animals in Australia, these laws are clearly not working.
https://theconversation.com/why-arent-australias-environment-laws-preventing-widespread-land-clearing-92924

Building a ‘second nature’ into our cities: wildness, art and biophilic design
Jordan Lacey, RMIT University
Biophilic design is beginning to boom. Witness its recent incorporation into the Melbourne Metro project and Sydney’s award-winning One Central Park, Chippendale. Given the increasing popularity of this urban design technique, it’s time to take a closer look at the meaning of nature and its introduction into our cities.
https://theconversation.com/building-a-second-nature-into-our-cities-wildness-art-and-biophilic-design-88642

Ged Kearney won’t commit Labor to blocking Adani
At a climate Q and A, Labor’s Batman candidate did the Labor two-step on blocking the mine with environment law.
https://www.crikey.com.au/2018/03/07/ged-kearney-wont-commit-labor-to-blocking-adani/

Victoria sees huge interest, low prices in renewable auction
Victoria says response to Australia’s largest renewable energy auction has been extremely strong and expects prices to be “very competitive”.
http://reneweconomy.com.au/victoria-sees-huge-interest-low-prices-renewable-auction-66061/

Why you can expect more chaos on Melbourne’s road and train lines
Melbourne’s massive infrastructure boom is well underway and commuters are suffering. Here’s what you need to know about the ongoing disruption and city’s big projects.
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-03-08/melbourne-traffic-congestion-infrastructure-more-chaos-expected/9523192

Multi-billion-dollar West Gate Tunnel planning approval blocked
Work on Melbourne’s $6.7 billion West Gate Tunnel project is set to grind to a halt after the Opposition unites with the Greens to revoke planning approval in Parliament.
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-03-07/west-gate-tunnel-planning-approval-blocked/9523618

Waste collection on hold in two Victorian shires as recycling crisis deepens
Ratepayers could soon have to fork out more money to get their bins collected, as China’s decision to restrict waste imports threatens recycling services.
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-03-07/wheelie-waste-suspends-recycling-collection-in-victorian-shires/9523134

‘We apologise’: Melbourne warned of more transport pain
Victorian commuters are told to brace for six weeks of disruption across the road, rail and tram networks, after the State Government announced another construction blitz.
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-03-07/melbourne-road,-rail-and-tram-passengers-to-be-hit-with-delays/9522792

Vic Labor in box seat ahead of election
A Newspoll of voters in Victoria has found the Daniel Andrews-led Labor government is likely to be returned at the state election later this year.
https://www.9news.com.au/national/2018/03/08/06/25/vic-labor-in-box-seat-ahead-of-election

Rubbish collection worries as as the trash piles up
Tens of thousands of people north-west of Melbourne have had their bin collections cut off – and more may follow
https://www.theage.com.au/national/victoria/melbourne-express-thursday-march-8-2018-20180308-h0x6bt.html

The west has Melbourne’s worst commutes – four hours a day across town
https://www.theage.com.au/national/victoria/the-west-has-melbourne-s-worst-commutes-four-hours-a-day-across-town-20180301-p4z28i.html

CEFC tips in $6.5 million loan for Newcastle solar farm
CEFC provides loan to finance most of 5MW solar farm to be built on former colliery site near Newcastle, paving the way for batteries and electric trucks.
http://reneweconomy.com.au/cefc-tips-6-5-million-loan-newcastle-solar-farm-67870/

Minister fuels energy industry battle
Federal Energy Minister Josh Frydenberg has suggested that AGL Energy hasn’t gone far enough in its commitment to replace old Liddell coal generator in NSW.
http://www.afr.com/brand/business-summit/josh-frydenberg-at-odds-with-energy-industry-leaders-over-liddell-demands-20180306-h0x3mk

Blue Mountains council to consider second asbestos report
https://www.smh.com.au/national/nsw/blue-mountains-council-to-consider-second-asbestos-report-20180305-p4z2ue.html

Is the Santos CSG waste water experiment safe?
Johanna Evans
A Santos CSG waste water experiment near Narrabri has gone ahead despite limited assurances as to its safety.
https://independentaustralia.net/environment/environment-display/is-the-santos-csg-waste-water-experiment-safe,11268

Tree clearing laws to be reintroduced
Laws to limit tree clearing in Queensland are set to be reintroduced to State Parliament.
http://www.couriermail.com.au/news/queensland/queensland-government/tree-clearing-laws-to-be-reintroduced-in-queensland-parliament/news-story/798447dbfcd5f4e40613b969e8fccdaf

Plibersek joins inner-city elites against Adani
Labor Deputy leader Tanya Plibersek has joined Bill Shorten in opposition to Adani, repeating his claim that “it just does not stack up”. It comes as the PM says their comments have had a “shocking and chilling” effect on jobs and investment.
http://www.couriermail.com.au/news/queensland/queensland-government/tanya-plibersek-joins-bill-shorten-in-opposing-adani-mine/news-story/43a86fdb0818c1e5bdf6acd1f2239c4d

Stopping Adani’s dirty mine: Our politicians’ love affair with fossil fuels
Michelle Pini
Senior editor Michelle Pini reports on recent developments in the fight to stop the Adani Carmichael coal mine.
https://independentaustralia.net/politics/politics-display/stopping-adanis-dirty-mine-our-politicians-love-affair-with-fossil-fuels,11270

If they block Adani, they’ll block them all
Des Houghton
If they block the Adani mine, it follows that Bill Shorten and Jackie Trad are likely to block other Galilee Basin mines and sink a $30 billion investment in Queensland.
http://www.couriermail.com.au/news/opinion/des-houghton-blog-if-labor-blocks-adani-its-likely-to-block-all-galilee-basin-mines/news-story/d87d075d735083ad70a8a7d62fc522d5

Campaign Diary: Marshall goes early amid more mud
While the Greens argue that Nick Xenophon has an anti-renewables track record, an election scorecard produced by the SA Conservation Council, the Australian Conservation Foundation and the Wilderness Society has ranked SA Best’s environmental policies ahead of both Labor and the Liberals.
https://indaily.com.au/news/politics/2018/03/06/campaign-diary-marshall-goes-early-amid-mud/

A voice from the front lines of climate change
At WOMADelaide this year, poet and activist Kathy Jetñil-Kijiner will bring immediacy to the climate change debate with her first-hand experience of its consequences on her home, the Marshall Islands.
https://citymag.indaily.com.au/culture/coming-soon/voice-front-lines-climate-change/

Neoen plans world’s biggest solar + wind powered hydrogen hub in S.A.
Neoen, operator of the Tesla big battery, now plan a “hydrogen superb” in South Australia with 150MW of solar, 150MW of wind, a 50MW hydrogen electrolyser and up to 400MWh of battery storage.
http://reneweconomy.com.au/neoen-plans-worlds-biggest-solar-wind-powered-hydrogen-hub-in-s-a-53674/

Adelaide Uni to add 2MWh vanadium battery system, 1.2MW solar
University to install 1.2MW of solar and a 0.5MW/2MWh vanadium flow redox battery system, cut its grid electricity consumption by 40%.
http://reneweconomy.com.au/adelaide-uni-add-2mwh-vanadium-battery-system-1-2mw-solar-55746/

Aboriginal land councils ramp up push for NT treaty promised 30 years ago 
The Northern Territory’s Aboriginal land councils ask the Chief Minister to sign a memorandum of understanding for a treaty at this year’s Barunga Festival.
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-03-07/aboriginal-land-councils-push-for-northern-territory-treaty/9523990

Shark shield claims ‘reckless fearmongering’: Fisheries Minister
http://www.watoday.com.au/wa-news/shark-shield-claims-reckless-fearmongering-fisheries-minister-20180307-h0x4nj.html

Another oil firm seeks sweeping injunction against UK protesters
Critics say legal move by UK Oil and Gas, that could see protesters at its sites jailed and fined, is draconian and anti-democratic
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/mar/07/another-oil-firm-seeks-sweeping-injunction-against-uk-protesters

Cape Town calls off drought ‘Day Zero’
The second largest city in South Africa will not run out of water this year after Cape Town deputy mayor said ‘day zero’ can be ‘completely avoided’ in 2018.
http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/breaking-news/cape-town-calls-off-drought-day-zero/news-story/20f946562b9f97bd3773f2c2aec3c037

New insights could pave the way for self-powered low energy devices
Researchers have discovered more details about the way certain materials hold a static charge even after two surfaces separate, information that could help improve devices that leverage such energy as a power source.
https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2018-03/giot-nic030718.php

The toll of the cobalt mining industry on health and the environment
What exactly is cobalt, and what are the health risks for those who work in the Democratic Republic of Congo’s cobalt mining industry?
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/the-toll-of-the-cobalt-mining-industry-congo/

With a TENG, solar cells could work come rain or shine
Despite the numerous advances in solar cells, one thing remains constant: cloudy, rainy conditions put a damper on the amount of electricity created. Now researchers reporting in the journal ACS Nano have developed hybrid solar cells that can generate power from raindrops.
https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2018-03/acs-wat030718.php

Urban heat: Can white roofs help cool world’s warming cities?
It has long been known that installing white roofs can help reduce heat buildup in cities. But recent research indicates that making surfaces more light-reflecting can have a significant impact on lowering extreme temperatures – not just in cities, but in rural areas as well.
https://e360.yale.edu/features/urban-heat-can-white-roofs-help-cool-the-worlds-warming-cities

The US just hit a major milestone for energy storage — which is also great news for solar
The United States has now added the capacity to store a billion watts of power for one hour, and it may double that total in 2018 alone.
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/energy-environment/wp/2018/03/06/the-u-s-just-hit-a-major-milestone-for-energy-storage-which-is-also-great-news-for-solar/?utm_term=.365c7f0f9441

China tests giant air cleaner to combat smog
Prototype offers innovative solution to major public health problem.
https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-018-02704-9

A secret superpower, right in your backyard
Small, urban green spaces provide an unexpected benefit in the fight against climate change, a new study shows.
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/03/06/climate/yard-garden-global-warming.html

Nature calling: Crammed cities go green for climate, health
Being close to nature is good for wellbeing, while vegetation is vital for curbing climate change, scientists say.
https://news.trust.org/item/20180305130021-f5d5o/

Why I’m obsessed with making the most sustainable burger possible
Christian Reynolds, University of Sheffield
Burgers have a surprising environmental impact – but it can be reduced.
https://theconversation.com/why-im-obsessed-with-making-the-most-sustainable-burger-possible-92314

Virtual power plants are in vogue, but they can be like taking a sledgehammer to a nut
Evan Franklin, University of Tasmania; Frank Jotzo, Australian National University
https://theconversation.com/virtual-power-plants-are-in-vogue-but-they-can-be-like-taking-a-sledgehammer-to-a-nut-92579

Timor Sea agreement does not end Timor Sea dispute
Damien Kingsbury
The Timor Sea agreement is hardly cause for celebration when the core of the struggle remains unsolved.
https://www.crikey.com.au/2018/03/07/timor-sea-agreement-does-not-end-timor-sea-dispute/

Norway boosts whaling quota despite international opposition
Fisheries minister announces 28% increase, but environmentalists say steep drop in number of minkes killed is sign of a dying industry
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/mar/07/norway-boosts-whaling-quota-international-opposition

New Insights Into Biodiversity Hotspots Could Help Protect Them from Potential Deep-Sea Mining
New insights into animal patterns around extinct submarine volcanoes could inform measures used to protect marine ecosystems from human activities, …
https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/03/180307122000.htm

Wildfires Set to Increase: Could We Be Sitting on a Tinderbox in Europe?
2017 was one of the worst years on record for fires in Europe, with over 800,000 hectares of land burnt in Portugal, Italy and Spain …
https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/03/180307100722.htm

Estimates Overstated for Mongolian Rangelands Damaged by Livestock
An estimated 70 percent of the rangelands in Mongolia are damaged by livestock and unregulated land use. But new research found less irreversible damage — up to 10 percent at most — from livestock …
https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/03/180307112746.htm

Wildlife conservation in North America may not be science-based after all
A study led by recent SFU Ph.D. alumnus Kyle Artelle has unveiled new findings that challenge the widespread assumption that wildlife management in North America is science-based. He conducted the study with SFU researchers John Reynolds and Jessica Walsh, as well as researchers from other institutions.
https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2018-03/sfu-wci030518.php

Monarch butterfly numbers decline for second year in a row
The iconic monarch butterfly travels thousands of miles south to overwinter in Mexico. But factors including the changing climate are challenging its existence — new figures show it’s declined 15 percent from last year.
http://www.dw.com/en/monarch-butterfly-numbers-decline-for-second-year-in-a-row/a-42847356

When bogs burn, the environment takes a hit
Bogs and other peatlands around the world store outsized amounts of carbon. Climate change and agriculture are putting them at risk
https://www.sciencenews.org/article/bogs-peatlands-fire-climate-change?tgt=nr

Charity compliance report 2017
Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission
This report examines the ACNC’s compliance and enforcement activities between 1 January 2017 and 31 December 2017.
http://www.apo.org.au/node/135361

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