Tag: News

New legislation tries to criminalize protest

In the Australian state of Victoria, the Napthine Liberal government is pushing draconian legislation to restrict citizens’ right to protest. The Summary Offences and Sentencing Amendment Bill would expand police powers to order people to “move on” from a public place. It introduces new circumstances in which move-on orders can be issued, including some which …

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Global warming not slowing – it’s speeding up

The Earth is gaining heat faster than ever In 2013 the Earth’s oceans accumulated energy at a rate of 12 Hiroshima atomic bombs per second, according to global ocean heat content records from the US National Oceanographic Data Center (NODC). This rapid heating in 2013 compares to an average of 4 Hiroshima bombs per second …

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Great Barren Reef: the cost of coal exports

On Friday the Abbott government approved the dumping of three million cubic metres of dredged seabed in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park. That’s enough waste to fill 150,000 dump trucks. This outrage is occurring because of a planned coal export boom. Environment Minister Greg Hunt quietly approved the dredging in December while you were …

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Tennis heat just the beginning

The Australian Open is currently subjecting tennis players and spectators to extreme heat, a striking reminder of human-caused global warming. Tennis players are no strangers to Melbourne heat. During the 2007 Open, Maria Sharapova described conditions as “inhuman”. The 2009 Open broke heat records with an average daily temperature of 34.7°C. Several players including Novak …

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Activists blockade new coal mine

As Australia bakes in a summer heatwave, protestors are blocking construction at Whitehaven Coal’s Maules Creek Coal Mine in northwest NSW’s Leard State Forest. About 30 activists are blockading the entrance to the forest, chaining themselves to bulldozers seeking to clear trees for an access route. Maules Creek is the largest new coal mine currently …

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The Xmas attack on the climate

“Happy is the country which is more interested in sport than in politics.” – Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott You might think the big news story of the Xmas break was that Australia won the Ashes. But in the same month you were relaxing and watching the cricket, the new Liberal/National Government quietly continued attacking …

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Unofficial deputy PM attacks climate science

Last week the Bureau of Meteorology announced 2013 was Australia’s warmest year on record, yet Australian newspapers published (at least) two opinion pieces denying the science of climate change. The first opinion piece was by Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s chief business advisor Maurice Newman and published in News Corp’s The Australian. Newman founded the neoliberal …

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Warsaw climate talks: Roadmap to nowhere?

The COP19 Warsaw climate talks reached agreement a week ago. Governments claim they have agreed a roadmap to solving global warming by 2015. In reality, delegates again ignored the urgent warnings from scientists and merely agreed to keep talking. In my earlier post about COP19, I talked about the close involvement of the coal industry. …

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60,000 Australians rally for climate action

Today 60,000 Australians gathered in 130 rallies around the nation, to call on the Australian Government to act on climate change. 30,000 rallied in Melbourne alone (more than ever appeared at an anti-carbon tax rally). They say a picture says a thousand words, so I’ll tell this story in photos.

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Climate talks more farcical than ever

Wisdom from the official website of the COP19 climate talks. Delegates of the world’s governments are currently gathered in Warsaw, Poland for the 19th Conference of Parties (COP19) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) – global climate talks to us laypeople. During previous COPs, I’ve examined the negotiating positions and outcomes …

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