FRIDAY 6 APRIL 2018

City of Port Phillip – Sustainability Workshops – April & May 2018
During April and May 2018 the City of Port Phillip will hold eight events for apartment dwellers who wish to live more sustainably. Workshops and talks will provide practical tips on topics like reducing your energy consumption, implementing waste free living and exploring vegan cooking. Register now as spaces are limited.
https://mailchi.mp/e81ce41b38ea/1u7ub3oeon-1276337?e=89973a5906

American conservatives are still clueless about the 97% expert climate consensus
Now there’s a handbook for that
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/climate-consensus-97-per-cent/2018/apr/05/american-conservatives-are-still-clueless-about-the-97-expert-climate-consensus

Carbon taxes can be both fair and effective, study shows
Study shows a tax on carbon-based fuels would go a long way toward curbing global climate change, and could be designed so that it doesn’t hurt the poorest households.
https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2018-04/miot-ctc040518.php

New study in oxygen-deprived black sea provides insights on future carbon budget
Scientists are studying the oxygen-deprived waters of the Black Sea to help answer questions about the deepest parts of the ocean and Earth’s climate.
https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2018-04/uomr-nsi040418.php

Tongan Olympic sensation joins fight to protect Pacific countries from climate change
Pita Taufatofua captured the world’s attention by going shirtless at two Olympic opening ceremonies but now says he wants to shine the spotlight on climate change and the effects of increasing sea levels and cyclones in Tonga.
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-04-06/viral-tongan-olympic-sensation-sets-sights-on-climate-change/9622648

Scientists suggest a giant sunshade in the sky could solve global warming
Scholars from developing countries call for greater say in solar geoengineering research, arguing poor nations have most at stake.
https://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2018/apr/05/scientists-suggest-giant-sunshade-in-sky-could-solve-global-warming

Climate change: 1.5°C is closer than we imagine
David Spratt
Global warming of 1.5°C is imminent, likely in just a decade from now. That’s the stunning conclusion to be drawn from a number of recent studies.
https://reneweconomy.com.au/climate-change-1-5c-closer-imagine-44124/

The Guardian view on Antarctica: The worrying retreat of the ice
Guardian editorial
The only thing more frightening than an advancing glacier may be one that is shrinking and raising sea levels round the world.
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/apr/05/the-guardian-view-on-antarctica-the-worrying-retreat-of-the-ice

Coalition agrees on 26% electricity emissions cut, Josh Frydenberg insists
Energy minister says party room backs reduction target for sector despite pro-coal backbencher’s claim there is no agreement
https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2018/apr/05/coalition-agrees-on-26-electricity-emissions-cut-josh-frydenberg-insists

Coal dream to fail: Snowy chief 
Snowy Hydro boss Paul Broad has warned ministers not to bow to the Monash Forum and build a new coal-fired power station.
https://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/mining-energy/coal-dream-to-fail-says-snowy-hydro-chief/news-story/7f8962a063c970b4f8a179402637ba1e

‘Backward policy ignores gas’
Andrew Liveris calls Australia’s energy strategy ‘backward’’ for relying on subsidising renewables.
https://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/mining-energy/backward-energy-policy-ignores-vast-gas-reserves-liveris/news-story/12fadde2eaeff8cc8193665121cbe1cc

Pipeline to a green future
Snowy 2.0’s scale gives it a strong business case, its backers say.
https://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/inquirer/snowy-hydro-20s-pipeline-to-a-green-future/news-story/6d37482fb0097dfb21589fde270f6ba1

Plant costs at odds with Morrison
The last supercritical coal-fired power plant was producing electricity for much lower than Scott Morrison has suggested.
https://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/mining-energy/kogan-creek-running-costs-at-odds-with-morrison-estimates/news-story/e5feb52afac9efe8573be7a2746ab3ef

Trump fix to ‘carbon tax on cars’
The Turnbull government has been handed a potential political fix to its decision on whether to introduce a ‘carbon tax on cars’.
https://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/climate/trump-offers-a-quick-fix-to-carbon-tax-on-cars/news-story/5ee1dc43cf36796e89fbc750c5ebf5d5

Australian rooftop solar boom rolls on – 351MW in first quarter
Rooftop solar installation boom continues in March, and total for first quarter is more than one third more than the previous record as households and …
https://reneweconomy.com.au/australian-rooftop-solar-boom-rolls-on-351mw-in-first-quarter-26595/

New target equates to 1140MW of rooftop solar PV in 2018
The Clean Energy Regulator announced on Thursday 29 March 2018 that the 2018 target for the Small-scale Renewable Energy Scheme, which provides financial support to rooftop solar PV and solar hot water, is to be 17.08%.
https://reneweconomy.com.au/new-target-equates-to-1140mw-of-rooftop-solar-pv-in-2018-2018/

Community-funded power ‘doable’, leading energy expert says
One of the country’s chief independent energy experts calls on state and federal governments to come up with strategies and policies to deal with the emergence of community-funded power projects.
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-04-06/community-funded-power-doable-leading-energy-expert-says/9621474

Coal fires Tony Abbott’s pre-Newspoll play
Michelle Grattan
One Liberal moderate bluntly characterises the “Monash Forum”, which burst into the energy debate this week, as “the deplorables trying to give themselves a credible front”.
https://theconversation.com/grattan-on-friday-coal-fires-tony-abbotts-pre-newspoll-play-94536

Monash Forum trick leaves conservatives divided
David Crowe
The first thing Ian Goodenough knew about the latest attempt to chip away at Malcolm Turnbull was when a colleague handed him a piece of paper with a picture of John Monash at the top.
https://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/politics/federal/monash-forum-trick-leaves-conservatives-divided-20180405-p4z7yi.html

Why we are measuring the health of Australian vegetation poorly
Ayesha Tulloch, University of Sydney; David Lindenmayer, Australian National University, and Hugh Possingham, The University of Queensland
In the aftermath of fires or logging, conservation needs to focus on recovering the health of the remaining vegetation, not just the size of the forest or woodland.
http://theconversation.com/why-we-are-measuring-the-health-of-australian-vegetation-poorly-94116

Can we afford a renewables-only power supply?
Geoff Carmody
It’s incumbent upon die-hard fans of up to 100% renewables to respond publicly to the multiplied generation and storage capacity arithmetic outlined here.
http://www.onlineopinion.com.au/view.asp?article=19657

Government strangely silent on Alinta’s Beijing connections 
Bernard Keane
The government is hostile to Chinese investment in Australian electricity interests — until it is desperate for a political fix, then anything goes.
https://www.crikey.com.au/2018/04/05/government-strangely-silent-on-alintas-beijing-connections/

It’s not perfect but implementing Murray-Darling plan in full can work
Jamie Pittock
Rivers will be lost, Indigenous communities and pastoral and tourism industries affected if not enough water is returned
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/apr/06/its-not-perfect-but-implementing-murray-darling-plan-in-full-can-work

Kanga cull a tough choice 
Ed Gannon
It’s not a pleasant subject but, while we’re in the midst of a kangaroo plague, what can we do to control the population.
https://www.weeklytimesnow.com.au/news/opinion/ed-gannon-kanga-cull-a-tough-choice/news-story/ccdbb0f7e9d2292010cf4859f1e62292

Food resource wasted
Michael Delahunty
Debate about kangaroo culling is marked by fear and ignorance
https://www.weeklytimesnow.com.au/news/opinion/kangaroo-harvesting-could-be-a-sustainable-commercial-industry/news-story/527327ff837dec550b3852d84822d42f

Coalition still kidding itself about price of coal generation
Giles Parkinson
Scott Morrison is right to dismiss new coal generation as uneconomic, but his estimates of existing coal costs is half what NSW back coal generators charged for off-peak baseload this past winter. It is time the Coalition stopped kidding itself.
https://reneweconomy.com.au/coalition-still-kidding-itself-about-price-of-coal-generation-24853/

Heartbreaking to watch’: legal orgs perturbed by police brutality
Three prominent Australian legal advocacy groups have spoken out about CCTV footage released earlier this week showing an alleged brutal assault by numerous police officers.
https://www.lawyersweekly.com.au/politics/23015-heartbreaking-to-watch-legal-orgs-perturbed-by-police-brutality

Dead ducks dumped on Vic premier’s door
A flock of mangled, illegally-shot duck corpses have been dumped outside the Victorian premier’s office as activists push for a ban on hunting the birds.
http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/breaking-news/dead-ducks-dumped-on-vic-premiers-door/news-story/b77752c33afee4e56512317cc9614ba3

AGL hits back at Barnaby Joyce claim it is ‘shorting’ the energy market
‘It is not possible to short a market by giving seven years’ notice of closure,’ company says as dispute over Liddell power station flares up
https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2018/apr/06/agl-hits-back-at-barnaby-joyce-claim-it-is-shorting-the-energy-market

Darling could run dry by December 
Australia’s longest river — the Darling — is forecast to run dry by December, in the wake of “flawed” rules allowing over-pumping in the northern Murray Darling Basin and rules governing the Menindee Lakes.
https://www.weeklytimesnow.com.au/news/national/darling-river-could-run-dry-by-december/news-story/a2e288414b92edae62de0cb55450d941

Anger brews over plans to dump WestConnex spoil in Port Kembla
An industrial community in New South Wales that has long campaigned for a clean-up of pollution faces a new fight with a WestConnex spoil plan.
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-04-06/anger-brews-over-plans-to-move-westconnext-spoil-to-port-kembla/9623532

What’s behind Alinta’s new-found interest in Liddell 
Alinta Energy chief executive Jeff Dimery says AGL Energy could be over-exaggerating the costs of keeping the Liddell coal power station running and “middle ground” should be found for an acquisition.
http://www.afr.com/business/mining/coal/alinta-ceo-suggests-agl-energy-overstating-liddell-extension-costs-20180405-h0ydgl

Alinta ‘unlikely’ to land Liddell
Alinta Energy’s prospects of buying the Liddell power station have been shot down by analysts.
https://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/mining-energy/agl-unlikely-to-sell-liddell-power-station-to-alinta/news-story/f61871d73a835787b40fb97791c66106

The big problem with 50-year-old coal plants
One of the biggest challenges running a coal power station like AGL Energy’s Liddell power station beyond its standard lifetime of 50 years is to avoid killing people.
http://www.afr.com/news/the-big-problem-with-50yearold-coal-plants-20180405-h0ycvg

AGL putting public last
AGL continues to defy pressure from the PM to sell its Liddell power plant as the competition watchdog blasts the energy giant.
https://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/mining-energy/agl-putting-public-last-says-accc/news-story/4e2eca1a7c5040568764e348043bc76f

Liddell could close without causing shortfall, PM says 
Malcolm Turnbull has acknowledged the Liddell power station could close in 2022 as planned without creating an energy shortfall.
http://www.afr.com/news/malcolm-turnbull-concedes-liddell-could-close-without-causing-shortfall-20180404-h0yclz

Hypocrisy leaves town fuming
Port Augusta’s mayor has questioned why Alinta did not make the same effort to extend the life of its coal-fired power station.
https://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/mining-energy/hypocrisy-over-power-station-rescue-bid-leaves-port-augusta-fuming/news-story/0df21e5b904d0e9d8cf9c19e3293f1f8

Faster and smarter: Grid operator hails performance of Tesla big battery
Grid operator says Tesla big battery is faster and smarter than conventional turbines – and is also reducing prices.
https://reneweconomy.com.au/faster-smarter-grid-operator-hails-performance-tesla-big-battery-91177/

Launceston smoke caused by controlled burn at Cataract Gorge
A fuel reduction burn caused plumes of smoke to hang across the Launceston skyline on Thursday evening.
http://www.examiner.com.au/story/5326522/controlled-burn-creates-smoke-over-launceston-horizon/?cs=95

Pay attention: The cable car project gains pace 
Mercury editorial
The kunanyi/Mt Wellington cable car project is more than a pipedream, so it’s time for some clear answers and for Hobartians to pay attention.
http://www.themercury.com.au/news/opinion/fresh-look-at-cable-car/news-story/d10c8a3920f4144ef4897fbe1befdef9

Drone shots ease WA whale research
The surprising toll that reproduction takes on southern right whales has been revealed through WA research.
https://thewest.com.au/news/wa/murdoch-university-researchers-study-cost-to-nursing-mother-whale-using-drone-photography-ng-b88796311z

New renewable energy capacity double fossil fuel growth in record-breaking 2017
Solar power is continuing to surge ahead as the world’s emerging energy technology, according to a United Nations report that finds global spending on solar was higher than any other energy source in 2017.
http://www.abc.net.au/news/science/2018-04-06/solar-power-most-backed-fuel-technology/9612976

Drop in plastic bags littering British seas linked to introduction of 5p charge
Scientists find an estimated 30% drop in plastic bags on the seabed in the same timeframe as charges were introduced in European countries
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/apr/05/drop-in-plastic-bags-littering-british-seas-linked-to-introduction-of-5p-charge

How many toxins are lingering in your body?
It’s becoming more common to get tested for the presence of dangerous farm chemicals. Harmful chemicals are all around us, from weedkillers used on paths in parks to cigarette smoke. Agricultural compounds, such as pesticides and insecticides, can be particularly difficult for the body’s natural systems to flush out. And scientists don’t know what its doing to you.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p063dtc5

The simple argument for keeping nuclear power plants open
We need more carbon-free power, not less.
https://www.vox.com/energy-and-environment/2018/4/5/17196676/nuclear-power-plants-climate-change-renewables

Solar soars: Renewable energy, by the numbers
Global investment climbs to $280 billion in 2017—and the economies leading the charge may surprise you.
http://www.dailyclimate.org/renewable-energy-by-the-numbers-2556199856.html

Solar power is burning bright. But it’s hardly twilight for fossil fuels
The world added more solar power than any other energy source in 2017. But it’s still a tiny fraction of total electricity.
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/04/05/climate/solar-energy.html?rref=collection%2Fsectioncollection%2Fclimate

Portugal generated 100% of its energy from renewable sources in March
It aims to run only on renewable energy year-round by 2040.
https://qz.com/1245048/portugal-generated-enough-renewable-energy-to-power-the-whole-country-in-march/

How the humble bicycle can save our cities
Copenhagenize offers a blueprint for how cities can welcome the bicycle–and all the positive outcomes that being a biking-centric city brings.
https://www.fastcompany.com/40550701/how-the-humble-bicycle-can-save-our-cities

Kenya needs to step up efforts to recycle e-waste
Kenya generates over 44,000 tons of electronic waste (e-waste) each year — items such as old laptops and phones that end up polluting the environment. There is no law regulating such waste.
http://www.dw.com/en/kenya-needs-to-step-up-efforts-to-recycle-e-waste/a-43252169

Britain offers millions in cash to bury its radioactive waste
Britain is again hunting for a suitable site to store its highly radioactive nuclear waste after a previous attempt was blocked by residents. Rural areas could be given cash if they house the underground facility.
http://www.dw.com/en/britain-offers-millions-in-cash-to-bury-its-radioactive-waste/a-43170682

Are we on track to create a sustainable world by 2050?
Jonathon Porritt sat down with Eco-Business at The SDG Collaborative in Singapore to talk about what’s standing in the way of a more sustainable, equitable world, and the environmental issues that concern him the most.
http://www.eco-business.com/news/are-we-on-track-to-create-a-sustainable-world-by-2050/

There is a way to a plastic-free life, but those who do it offer a word of caution
The message from people who are attempting to go without single-use plastics is that it is easier than it seems — but they say people should not try to cut them out completely in one go.
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-04-05/trying-to-live-without-single-use-plastics/9619012

Can this new electric rickshaw stop cars from taking over Asian cities?
As more middle-class people purchase vehicles, cities like Dhaka, Kathmandu, and Manila are getting stuck in ever worsening gridlock. This rickshaw is designed to modernize the more sustainable transportation option.
https://www.fastcompany.com/40554006/this-electric-rickshaw-keep-cars-from-taking-over-urban-transportation-in-asian-cities

Green technologies environmentally and profit friendly
Companies looking to reduce their environmental impact without negatively affecting profits may want to consider increasing their investment in green technology and other sustainable IT solutions.
https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2018-04/wsu-gte040418.php

Canadian small businesses leading the way in sustainability
New research from the University of Waterloo shows that Canadian small businesses are important- and often overlooked- drivers of sustainability and the green economy.
https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2018-04/uow-csb040418.php

Double perovskites in environmentally friendly solar cells
A further step has been taken along the road to manufacturing solar cells from lead-free perovskites. High quality films based on double perovskites, which show promising photovoltaic properties, have been developed in collaboration between Linköping University, Sweden, and Nanyang Technological University in Singapore.
https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2018-04/lu-dpi040518.php

IEA accused of undermining global shift from fossil fuels
Highly critical study warns projections used by the organisation tasked with leading the switch to clean energy remain skewed towards oil and gas and may break climate targets of Paris agreement
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/apr/05/iea-accused-of-undermining-global-shift-from-fossil-fuels

BHP quits coal body over climate
BHP will quit the World Coal Association over climate change policies but will stay with the US Chamber of Commerce.
https://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/mining-energy/bhp-quits-world-coal-association-over-climate-views/news-story/443c4a5043cfc2955593dd0bdf210015

Climate change threatens rare British orchid that tricks bees into mating
Researchers find that warmer temperatures are upsetting the seasonal relationship between the early spider orchid and pollinating bees
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/apr/05/climate-change-threatens-rare-british-orchid-that-tricks-bees-into-mating

A study by the University of Tartu scientists: Drained peatlands emit laughing gas
A global study lead by geographers at the University of Tartu has revealed that drained nitrogen-rich peatlands produce laughing gas, which degrades the ozone layer and warms the climate. To avoid this, swamp forests, fens and bogs need to be conserved.
https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2018-04/erc-asb040418.php

Microplastics litter the ocean, but what about freshwater and land?
Hundreds of scientific publications now show that microplastics contaminate the world’s oceans, yet scientists have only just begun to document and study microplastics in freshwater and terrestrial systems.
https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2018-04/aaft-mlt040318.php

Coral bleaching threatens the diversity of reef fish
New research reveals that global warming also affects fish who depend on corals. The Great Barrier Reef is revered for its kaleidoscope of color. New international research led by Ph.D. student Laura Richardson of the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies at James Cook University reveals that coral bleaching events not only whitewash corals, but can also reduce the variety of fish occupying these highly valued ecosystems.
https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2018-04/acoe-cbt040318.php

Under the sea: Fighting Greece’s plastic trash problem
According to pollution activists, Greeks are largely unaware of their country’s plastic problem because bathing water quality remains high in most parts of the country and most of the pollution is not visible. But visit a Greek shoreline not used by swimmers and that picture can quickly change.
https://www.apnews.com/b4bbfdcbfc5144849291d4ecdd903729/Under-the-sea:-Fighting-Greece’s-plastic-trash-problem

Study warns seabirds not adapting to shifting climate
A new international study out of the University of Edinburgh, with key input from Canadian researchers, has shown that seabirds are not adapting to warming sea surface temperatures caused by climate change.
http://thechronicleherald.ca/novascotia/1559006-study-warns-seabirds-not-adapting-to-shifting-climate

Slow days at work: careful what you wish for
James Adonis
On average, people spend almost three hours a week at work with nothing to do, and this is true for a majority of employees in every industry.
https://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/business/small-business/slow-days-at-work-careful-what-you-wish-for-20180405-p4z7yl.html

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