Issue date : Thu 10 December, 2020
Estimated Reading Time : 04 Min 30 Seconds
Number of items : 53
We’ve made more than the Earth has grown
Cosmos
Thu 10 December, 2020
Among its other dubious distinctions, the year 2020 marks the approximate tipping point between anthropogenic mass and living biomass, scientists say.
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New UNSW hub to spearhead government's war on waste
The Australian Financial Review
Thu 10 December, 2020
One of the nation's leading scientists and inventors is set to head a new research hub investigating technology for waste reduction and materials processing.
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UN urges a push toward low-carbon tech to avoid a climate catastrophe
Yahoo News
Thu 10 December, 2020
The world is on a collision course towards a catastrophic 3 degree Celsius increase in global temperatures. That’s the primary finding of the United Nations’ 2020 Emissions Gap Report, which its Environment Program published on Wednesday. The report details the drastic steps governments, businesses and individuals will have to undertake if the world will have any chance to meet the less than 2-degree Celsius goal laid out in the 2015 Paris Accord or the increasingly unlikely 1.5 degree Celsius target put forward by the IPCC in 2018.
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Want to be carbon neutral? Slash emissions by 78pc, Boris told
The Australian Financial Review
Thu 10 December, 2020
London | Britain must cut its carbon emissions by 78 per cent in the next 15 years if it is to get to net zero by 2050, the government's independent Climate Change Committee has warned, setting Prime Minister Boris Johnson a steep and unforgiving benchmark.
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How the Paris effect is driving green changes faster than predicted
The Sydney Morning Herald
Thu 10 December, 2020
Progress toward decarbonising the global economy has accelerated so unexpectedly quickly since the Paris Agreement five years ago that a green economic race has broken out and the goal of keeping global warming to two degrees or less is in sight, says the British economist Lord Nicholas Stern.
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The Age
The Brisbane Times
WAToday
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The climate crisis: a ‘clear and present need’
Australian Journal of Pharmacy
Wed 9 December, 2020
Experts are warning that Australia needs to be much better prepared for the health impacts of climate change
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Taking climate action doesn't destroy jobs – they depend on it
The Sydney Morning Herald
Thu 10 December, 2020
Fourteen years ago today, John Howard announced his prime ministerial task group to investigate the appropriate design of an emissions trading scheme for Australia.
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The Age
The Brisbane Times
WAToday
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Microsoft and 12 others join Amazon's climate change initiative
Yahoo News
Thu 10 December, 2020
Microsoft and 12 other companies have joined Amazon's Climate Pledge, which is a commitment to hit net zero carbon emissions by 2040. The project aims to meet the climate goals of the United Nations Paris Agreement a decade early. Signatories also agree to regularly report their greenhouse gas emissions.
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Even in Australia’s biggest gas state, gas won’t be a transition fuel for the grid
Reneweconomy
Thu 10 December, 2020
Western Australia may only have a small population, but it is the country’s number one state when it comes to gas consumption. It’s got some of the biggest gas fields in the nation and it also has one of the country’s dirtiest and crappiest coal generators – Muja – that is due to shut half its capacity in four years time.
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Why solar-powered Christmas lights are a safer (and greener) option
Energy Matters
Thu 10 December, 2020
After a unique and challenging 2020, the holiday season is right on our doorstep and for many of us, that means Christmas and all of its trimmings. Decorating the family home in strings of lights has become an annual tradition for many but there are many safety steps that are important to follow.
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Why city policy to ‘protect the Brisbane backyard’ is failing
The Conversation
Thu 10 December, 2020
Urban consolidation policies to contain development within existing urban areas are creating poor development outcomes in Australian cities. In Brisbane, our newly published research shows this means the low-density housing character of the city is being retained at the expense of backyards.
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Two interesting new uses for poop
Cosmos
Thu 10 December, 2020
Honeybees use it to defend their colonies, while giant pandas roll in it to increase their cold tolerance. Both are effective strategies it seems, but one is a bit messier than the other.
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New whale species discovered in Mexico
9 News
Wed 9 December, 2020
Scientists working off the western coast of Mexico say they have found a previously unknown species of whale.
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How COVID-19 looks from above
Cosmos
Thu 10 December, 2020
Scientists studying satellite images of the Earth have identified changes linked to COVID-19 lockdowns that may shed light on how the environment responds to massive reductions in air and water pollution.
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When people work together we can achieve practically anything
ProBono Australia News
Thu 10 December, 2020
The climate emergency is an urgent existential challenge. But Jess Scully’s new book, Glimpses of Utopia, reminds us the situation is redeemable, with the application of ideas that are already taking root, writes David Ritter.
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Merry, bright, full of eco-delights: how to bring Christmas back down to earth
The Age
Thu 10 December, 2020
It's the most wonderful time of the year, but the stats speak for themselves. Holiday celebrations and gift-giving resulted in up to $400 million in waste last year and this year, with a plethora of packages being sent during trying circumstances, the figure is likely to rise.
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The Brisbane Times
The Sydney Morning Herald
Yahoo News
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Australia will beat 2030 emissions targets if the tech road map works
The Sydney Morning Herald
Wed 9 December, 2020
Australia is projected to beat its 2030 climate change targets by 145 million tonnes of carbon emissions without relying on controversial credits from past global agreements, as the United Nations predicts the world is still headed for catastrophic warming.
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The Age
The Brisbane Times
WAToday
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Victoria lays out new energy upgrades targets
Energy Magazine
Wed 9 December, 2020
The State Government has set new targets for the Victorian Energy Upgrades (VEU) program and eligible technologies will be expanded in an effort to bring down prices and fight climate change.
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Victoria passes half-way mark on road to 50% renewables by 2030
Reneweconomy
Wed 9 December, 2020
Victoria’s energy minister Lily D’Ambrosio declared the milestone achievement in a speech to the Melbourne Press Club on Tuesday, the same day that the Labor Andrews government unveiled new energy efficiency targets for households and businesses.
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It's not too late for Australia to pivot on climate change
The Sydney Morning Herald
Wed 9 December, 2020
This time last year the federal government was caught dangerously off-guard. Having ignored the clear warnings, our national leadership was woefully unprepared as vast swathes of Australia went up in flames in a disaster fuelled by climate change.
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The Age
The Brisbane Times
WAToday
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At this weekend’s climate summit, no one will be perfect but Australia will be awful
Reneweconomy
Wed 9 December, 2020
Timing never really seems to work out for Australia’s government. This Saturday, there will be a relatively big “Climate Ambition Summit”, held on the fifth anniversary of the Paris climate agreement. It’s hosted by UK Prime minister Boris Johnson and UN Secretary-General António Guterres, and governments will be “invited to present more ambitious and high-quality climate plans, as well as COVID recovery plans, new finance commitments and measures to limit global warming to 1.5C”.
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Until recently, pressure on Australia to drop carryover credits had little impact. But times change
The Guardian
Wed 9 December, 2020
Political pressure makes the impossible inevitable. Unfortunately, so much has been written about how democracy is broken, that it can seem churlish to point out that sometimes it works just as it is designed to: slowly, imperfectly and then suddenly. Take, for example, Scott Morrison’s backflip on using so-called “carryover credits” to meet Australia’s Paris climate commitments.
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Juukan Gorge inquiry puts Rio Tinto on notice, but without drastic reforms, it could happen again
The Conversation
Wed 9 December, 2020
On the eve of Reconciliation Week this year, news broke that Rio Tinto had destroyed ancient rock shelters at Juukan Gorge in Western Australia to expand one of its 16 iron ore mines in the Pilbara.
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Renewables, EVs and hydrogen key to zero carbon mining, BHP says
Reneweconomy
Wed 9 December, 2020
The increased use of renewable energy, the deployment of electric vehicles and the use of hydrogen in metals processing will be key to achieving carbon neutral mining, representatives of Australia’s largest resources company has told an international mining summit.
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Danone gets CDP's sustainable triple A rating
Food Processing
Wed 9 December, 2020
Danone has been recognised as a global environmental leader by CDP — a global disclosure system that drives organisations and governments towards sustainable practices.
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Shell executives quit amid discord over green push
The Australian Financial Review
Wed 9 December, 2020
London | Royal Dutch Shell has been hit by the departure of several clean energy executives amid a split over how far and fast the oil giant should shift towards greener fuels.
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Green hydrogen: A fuel bursting with climate-saving potential
Yahoo News
Wed 9 December, 2020
In the battle against climate change, green hydrogen is being hailed as a potential miracle fuel that could help the world's worst-polluting industries slash carbon emissions.
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International Business Times
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Fossil fuels still reign, but renewables make inroads
Yahoo News
Wed 9 December, 2020
Five years after the signing of the Paris Climate Accord fossil fuels still dominate the energy landscape but it is renewables that are enjoying the strongest growth which even the Covid-19 crisis has not dented.
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International Business Times
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Australia’s birth dearth: Fertility rate hits a new record low
The New Daily
Wed 9 December, 2020
Australia’s fertility rate has fallen to the lowest level in recorded history. The Australian Bureau of Statistics revealed on Wednesday that the nation’s fertility rate hit a record low of 1.66 babies per woman in 2019 after steadily declining from 1.97 in 2009.
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Do fish dream?
Cosmos
Wed 9 December, 2020
A century ago the German biologist Jakob von Uexküll coined the term umwelt – literally “surrounding world” – as a way of capturing the way different organisms inhabit different realities, each defined by their particular sensory world.
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