Environmental News

Climate change poses hazard to infrastructure, report says

Admin Keep Queensland Beautiful - Tuesday, October 30, 2012
AS a land of droughts and flooding rains, Australia should be well prepared for the extreme weather that climate change will bring - but it isn't.

The Climate Institute says government and business have much to do to protect Australia's infrastructure from damage in natural disasters.

Science shows that as sea levels and global temperature rise, the frequency of extreme floods, droughts and bushfires will rise exponentially.

Read more: http://www.couriermail.com.au/news/national/business-govt-must-protect-infrastructure/story-fncyva0b-1226504977361

Tropical north may see fewer cyclones this summer: Bureau

Admin Keep Queensland Beautiful - Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Residents of Australia's tropical north will experience fewer cyclones than usual this summer, but floods are still a threat.

There is a 63 per cent chance fewer cyclones than usual will batter Australia's northern coastline, the Bureau of Meteorology says.

About 11 tropical cyclones occur across Australia during an average storm season.

Read more: http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/environment/weather/tropical-north-may-see-fewer-cyclones-this-summer-bureau-20121022-280qc.html

What's taking coal-fired power to breaking point?

Admin Keep Queensland Beautiful - Tuesday, October 23, 2012

In recent weeks, there has been significant interest in the media about developments in the NEM following (but not necessarily the result of) the introduction of the carbon tax.

Some of these developments have included the following:
1) The periodic closure of Alinta’s Northern Power Station in South Australia;
2) The closure of Delta’s Munmorah Power Station in NSW;
3) The closure of one unit at EnergyAustralia’s Yallourn Power Station in Victoria – running hot on the heels of the problems experienced in June and July with the flooding of the coal supplies;
4) The closure of one unit at Stanwell’s Tarong Power Station in Queensland; and
5) Current technical problems at the Eraring Power Station in NSW, leading to all four units being offline for a number of weeks.


Read more: http://www.climatespectator.com.au/commentary/whats-taking-coal-fired-power-breaking-point

Undone by rat cunning

Admin Keep Queensland Beautiful - Tuesday, October 23, 2012

They came ashore with the convicts, sailors and marines on the First Fleet in 1788. Black rats were the first of Australia's unwelcome arrivals that have disrupted ecosystems and wiped out wildlife across the land.

Now researchers at the University of Sydney have shown how the rats' quick learning and keen sense of smell can be exploited to dramatically reduce their attacks on native birds. Dr Catherine Price and Associate Professor Peter Banks say the technique could be adapted to protect vulnerable species around the world.

Read more: http://www.theage.com.au/national/education/undone-by-rat-cunning-20121022-2812o.html

Uranium mining: Campbell Newman's two week turnaround

Admin Keep Queensland Beautiful - Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Premier Campbell Newman wrote to one of Australia's largest conservation bodies just two weeks ago to tell them he had no plans to allow uranium mining in Queensland.

The Australian Conservation Foundation wrote to the Queensland government in September concerned about requests from the Australian Uranium Association and the Queensland Resources Council to mine uranium mining in Queensland.

Read more: http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/queensland/uranium-mining-campbell-newmans-two-week-turnaround-20121022-28168.html

190m tonnes of ice a day has sea rising 1mm a year

Admin Keep Queensland Beautiful - Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Antarctica is shedding an average of 190 million tonnes of ice every day, according to a landmark study that used satellites to ''weigh'' the vast landmass.

Although parts of East Antarctica are growing, glaciers in West Antarctica are melting faster, leading to a net loss of ice across the continent, according to the study published in the journal Nature.

Read more: http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/environment/weather/190m-tonnes-of-ice-a-day-has-sea-rising-1mm-a-year-20121022-2817w.html

Koala champion calls for Qld grant boycott

Admin Keep Queensland Beautiful - Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Earlier this month, Environment Minister Andrew Powell made $800,000 available for the grants over the next four years, which will go to groups involved in koala rescue and rehabilitation.

The move was part of the state government's $26.5 million plan to protect the koala, which is listed as vulnerable in Queensland, NSW and the ACT.

Most of the money will be used to buy land to be set aside as koala sanctuaries.

But Australian Koala Foundation president Deborah Tabart called on groups not to accept grants until the state government stepped up its protection efforts.

Read more: http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/breaking-news/koala-champion-calls-for-qld-grant-boycott/story-fn3dxiwe-1226498634088

Renewables energy target 'driving up prices'

Admin Keep Queensland Beautiful - Tuesday, October 23, 2012

THE Australian Energy Markets Commission has warned that the renewables energy target is distorting power markets, both driving up power prices for consumers while causing uneconomic outcomes for generators and their owners.

"I do have some issues with the competitive sector of the electricity market," the commission's chairman, John Pierce, told a business forum earlier today.

Read more: http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/business/carbon-economy/renewables-energy-target-driving-up-prices-20121018-27tc4.html

Online tool reveals sea level risks

Admin Keep Queensland Beautiful - Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Scientists have developed a calculator that can guide coastal planners on the height and positioning necessary for infrastructure to avoid inundation and erosion as sea levels rise.

Called 'Canute – the Sea Level Calculator', it will estimate the necessary elevation for infrastructure on hard shorelines. In the case of soft shorelines the webtool will estimate the distance infrastructure needs to be set back from the water to avoid shoreline recession.

Read more: http://www.ben-global.com/StoryView.asp?storyID=9639772&section=Business+News&sectionsource=s1450118&Channel=Business#.UICM-2_MhXt

Conflicting sustainable seafood guides confuse consumers

Admin Keep Queensland Beautiful - Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Whether at the supermarket or the local fisho, most people find it difficult to know what seafood is sustainable. To help consumers make more informed choices, conservation organisations have been busy with sustainable seafood campaigns.

In Australia, the Australian Marine Conservation Society (AMCS) recently released a comprehensive Sustainable Seafood Guide, including a free smart phone application, to choosing seafood wisely. They label each type of seafood as “better”, “think”, or “no”.

Read more: https://theconversation.edu.au/conflicting-sustainable-seafood-guides-confuse-consumers-9867