Australian news, and some related international items

Nuclear shill group on the move in New South Wales


Rob Parker injects nuclear into energy debate, Goulburn Post Louise Thrower@ThrowerLouise, 

Rob Parker, who coordinates Nuclear for Climate Australia (NCA), argued politicians should not shy away from nuclear energy. In southern NSW NCA has identified Marulan, Yass and the Shoalhaven as three of 18 potential sites for nuclear reactors.

Mr Parker ran unsuccessfully as a Labor candidate for Goulburn in 2007 and as an independent in 2011. But he says his views have little to do with politics, other than to shatter notions.

He was speaking about the latest tit-for-tat between shadow State energy spokesman Adam Searle and Goulburn MP Pru Goward. Mr Searle last week said Deputy Premier John Barilaro should “come clean” about his social media post on Thursday.

“We could have them (small nuclear reactors) operating here in a decade – which is not long for the energy industry…,” it stated.

Mr Searle said it was the second time Mr Barilaro had raised the possibility of nuclear energy in the State, the first time being in May when he was “prepared to talk about it as an option.”

“He can’t just float an idea like this without being specific. He should be clear with the public on where he thinks the nuclear reactors should be. A pro- nuclear power group is on the record suggesting reactors should be in the Goulburn electorate – does Mr Barilaro agree?

“Our farmers’ clean and green reputation is known throughout the world but a nuclear industry in these areas would end all that.”

Mr Searle told The Post the technology was a “silly idea” given there were no apparent solutions for dumping nuclear waste and required a “huge amount” of water….

The consultant civil engineer [Parker] said one of the great problems with renewables supported by gas was that “they entrenched failure while giving the impression of achievement.” …….

Mr Parker argued that nuclear energy needed to be 80 per cent of the mix due to climate change.

The NCA has listed 18 possible nuclear reactor sites on its website, including Yass, Marulan and Shoalhaven which could be constructed by 2040 and provide 149 terrawatts of energy annually.

Mr Parker said he considered many locations but the best ones were those near water, rail and the transmission grid…….. He maintained the Snowy Mountains area could work given its plentiful water reservoirs. Yass was also close to the Burrinjuck storage.

Mr Parker believed Mr Barilaro was raising the possibility of smaller modular reactors being developed across more sites, which did not involve significantly opening up the grid or a large water supply.

He also maintained that nuclear was becoming more price competitive due to the combined effects of electricity generation at $105/MWh in 2018 and the likelihood of increased network costs.

He will address the Australian Nuclear Association conference in Sydney this weekend. He will argue nuclear energy will not only restore business confidence and energy price stability but increase Australia’s resilience in the face of increasing climate change.

But Premier Gladys Berejiklian has ruled out nuclear reactors

October 4, 2017 Posted by | New South Wales, politics | Leave a comment

James Hansen is wrong on Generation IV nuclear reactors – not safe, not waste-free, not cheap

The risks…… fact, thorium has been used to produce fissile material (uranium-233) for nuclear weapons tests.

Waste…. “Even integral fast reactors (IFRs), which recycle most of their waste, leave behind materials that have been contaminated by transuranic elements and so cannot avoid the need to develop deep geologic disposal.”

Generation IV economics…..The US Government Accountability Office’s 2015 report noted that technical challenges facing SMRs and advanced reactors may result in higher-cost reactors than anticipated, making them less competitive with large light-water reactors or power plants using other fuels.

James Hansen’s Generation IV nuclear advocacy: a deconstruction of nuclear fallacies and fantasies, Dr Jim Green, 3rd October, 2017 

Climate scientist James Hansen’s claims about Generation IV nuclear concepts simply don’t stack up, argues JIM GREEN Dr James Hansen is rightly admired for his scientific and political work drawing attention to climate change. His advocacy of nuclear power ‒ and in particular novel Generation IV nuclear concepts ‒ deserves serious scrutiny.

In a nutshell, Dr Hansen (among others) claims that some Generation IV reactors are a triple threat: they can convert weapons-usable (fissile) material and long-lived nuclear waste into low-carbon electricity. Let’s take the weapons and waste issues in turn. Continue reading

October 4, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | 5 Comments

Adani mining company facing income crash – desperate to get Australian tax-payer funding

IEEFA’s Tim Buckley told Four Corners a potential $1.5bn loss on any decision to walk away from the mine proposal explained why the Adani Group remained focused on securing Australian taxpayer support through a Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility loan

Adani needs Carmichael mine to stave off income crash, report says
The Indian mining giant faces plummeting revenue and risks losing the Abbot Point coal terminal, while new questions have arisen about its ownership structure,
Guardian,  Joshua Robertson, 3 Oct 17, Adani’s ambitions face a grave new risk in Australia, where its grip on its only operating asset, a Queensland coal port, is threatened by a crash in income unless its contentious Carmichael mine becomes a reality, a new report says.

Adani must refinance more than $2bn in debt on the Abbot Point coal terminal – more than it paid for the port in 2011 – despite earning $1.2bn in revenue and paying virtually no tax in Australia since, according to the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis.

And Adani must gain fresh lender backing at a time when the port faces plummeting revenue that only its $5bn mine proposal, itself yet to secure finance, can make up for, the analysis says.

IEEFA’s analysis was included in an ABC Four Corners program on Adani on Monday that also featured a former Indian environment minister saying he was “appalled” by Australia’s approval of the mine.

Jairam Ramesh told the program Adani’s environmental history in India “leaves a lot to be desired” and questioned whether the Australian and Queensland governments had properly considered this or its financial conduct, including allegations of large-scale fraud.

 “There’s no reason for me to believe that Adani would be a responsible environmental player globally,” he said.

The IEEFA report found new links between Adani’s Australian corporate structures and a Caribbean tax haven, the port in particular having a “complex and opaque ownership structure [that] appears well-suited to minimising tax”.

It was previously thought that local companies relating to Abbot Point and a proposed rail link with the Carmichael mine – for which Adani is seeking a concessional loan of up to $900m from Australian taxpayers – were owned by an Adani family company in the Cayman Islands, Atulya Resources Limited.

But Singapore corporate filings show Atulya is owned by another Adani family company in the British Virgin Islands, ARFT Holding Ltd.

And two trusts related to the Carmichael rail project are potentially held by another BVI-registered company called Carmichael Rail Australia Ltd, according to the IEEFA analysis. One of the trusts holds a $2/tonne royalty deed that would net the Adani family income from the Carmichael mine, which is expected to yield up to 60m tonnes a year.

Contracts that force Abbot Point’s coalmining customers to pay for using the port’s full capacity have begun to expire, with the port actually running at just over half its capacity as the bullish predictions of a coal boom gave way to a downturn.

To refinance the port, Adani needed to “convince financiers that [Abbot Point] will be fully utilised into the future” with its own Carmichael mine the only candidate to pick up this looming shortfall of about 25 million tonnes a year, IEEFA said.

The port thus ran “the risk of becoming a stranded asset” if the Carmichael mine, itself a $5bn greenfield project that represented a “high-risk gamble”, did not secure financial backing overseas, it said.

IEEFA’s Tim Buckley told Four Corners a potential $1.5bn loss on any decision to walk away from the mine proposal explained why the Adani Group remained focused on securing Australian taxpayer support through a Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility loan…….

October 4, 2017 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, climate change - global warming, politics | Leave a comment

A STRANDED NUCLEAR WASTE ACT proposed in USA, to compensate for community losses

Proposed federal bill would give millions to cities storing nuclear waste, Chicago TribuneMary McIntyre, News-Sun, 3 Oct 17,  A  bill that could provide millions of dollars annually to cities throughout the country storing nuclear waste had its beginning in Zion.

U.S. Sen. Tammy Duckworth D-Ill., and U.S. Rep. Brad Schneider, D-Deerfield, spoke Sunday in Hosea Park to announce the proposed STRANDED (Sensible, Timely Relief for America’s Nuclear Districts’ Economic Development) Act, federal legislation which they said was developed with the help of Zion Mayor Al Hill.

“Zion is the impetus,” Schneider said.

The bicameral bill will be introduced by Schneider in the House and Duckworth in the Senate, and would pay communities storing nuclear waste $15 per kilogram annually. Currently, Zion has 1,020 metric tons of waste stored on its lakefront from the closed nuclear plant, which operated from 1973 to 1998. That would mean Zion would get more than $15 million a year under the proposal.

Hill referred to the potential economic value of the lakefront property were it not for the waste. “The 300-pound gorilla along the lakefront are the spent fuel rods which single-handedly prohibits future development of the site, and robs the Zion area of dollars, jobs and economic vitality,” Hill said.

In addition to the payments, the bill would commission a study by the Department of Energy to consider other options for land with stranded nuclear waste, a task force for such communities to help them find grants, tax credits for new homebuyers in those communities and business incentives for new companies to open in those communities.

U.S. Rep. Brad Schneider, D-Deerfield, speaks Sunday in Hosea Park to announce the proposed STRANDED Act, federal legislation that would provide money to communities storing nuclear waste.
Cities storing nuclear waste throughout the country would be paid under the bill, Schneider said.

“It’s time the federal government makes right with these communities,” he said…….

October 4, 2017 Posted by | General News | Leave a comment

Trump Signs Bill Revoking Obama-Era Gun Checks for People With Mental Illnesses

Donald Trump described the Las Vagas shooter as “demented”, but Trump was happy to sign a Bill that will permit mentally ill people to have guns. Also he’s supporting a move to permit silencers – (that would have enabled to Las Vaegas shooter to kill many more people

Trump Signs Bill Revoking Obama-Era Gun Checks for People With Mental Illnesses, President Donald Trump quietly signed a bill into law Tuesday rolling back an Obama-era regulation that made it harder for people with mental illnesses to purchase a gun.

The rule, which was finalized in December, added people receiving Social Security checks for mental illnesses and people deemed unfit to handle their own financial affairs to the national background check database.

Had the rule fully taken effect, the Obama administration predicted it would have added about 75,000 names to that database.

President Barack Obama recommended the now-nullified regulation in a 2013 memo following the mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, which left 20 first graders and six others dead. The measure sought to block some people with severe mental health problems from buying guns.

The original rule was hotly contested by gun rights advocates who said it infringed on Americans’ Second Amendment rights. Gun control advocates, however, praised the rule for curbing the availability of firearms to those who may not use them with the right intentions.

Both the House and Senate last week passed the new bill, H.J. Res 40, revoking the Obama-era regulation.

Trump signed the bill into law without a photo op or fanfare. The president welcomed cameras into the oval office Tuesday for the signing of other executive orders and bills. News that the president signed the bill was tucked at the bottom of a White House email alerting press to other legislation signed by the president.

The National Rifle Association “applauded” Trump’s action. Chris Cox, NRA-ILA executive director, said the move “marks a new era for law-abiding gun owners, as we now have a president who respects and supports our arms.”

Everytown For Gun Safety President John Feinblatt said he expected more gun control rollbacks from the Trump administration. In a statement to NBC News, he called the action “just the first item on the gun lobby’s wish list” and accused the National Rifle Association of “pushing more guns, for more people, in more places.”

Sen. Chris Murphy, D-Conn., a leading gun control advocate in Congress, called out Republicans over the move.

“Republicans always say we don’t need new gun laws, we just need to enforce the laws already on the books. But the bill signed into law today undermines enforcement of existing laws that Congress passed to make sure the background check system had complete information,” he said in an emailed statement.

October 4, 2017 Posted by | General News | Leave a comment

Adani’s tax havens – the Queensland coal mine plan’s connection with corruption

Adani Australia: Investigation uncovers tax haven ties to British Virgin Islands, Four Corners ,By Stephen Long, Wayne Harley and Mary Fallon , ABC News, 3 Oct 17 An investigation by the ABC’s Four Corners program has uncovered previously unknown tax haven ties for Adani Group’s Australian operations, with key assets ultimately owned in the British Virgin Islands.

Key points:

  • Adani Group’s filings with ASIC fail to mention a company registered in the British Virgin Islands
  • Vinod Adani, older brother of Adani Group chairman Gautam Adani, has been under investigation in India
  • Vinod Adani also a substantial shareholder in Adani Enterprises Limited

Adani Group has promised a $22 billion windfall in taxes and mining royalty payments for Australia over the life of the giant Carmichael coal mine it has been given approval to build in outback Queensland.

But experts say an opaque web of companies and trusts behind its Australian assets gives it ample opportunity to minimise the tax it pays.

Adani Group’s assets in Australia include the Abbot Point Coal Terminal near Mackay in Queensland, a terminal expansion project it has approval to undertake at Abbot Point, and a planned railway line of nearly 400 kilometres from the port to the giant mine it wants to build in the Galilee Basin — aided by a subsidised loan of up to a $1 billion it is seeking from the Federal Government’s Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility.

It was previously thought that Atulya Resources, a Cayman Islands domiciled company controlled by members of the Adani family, was the ultimate holding company for Abbot Point, the expansion project, and the railway.

However, filings in Singapore by privately-owned Adani companies show that a company registered in another notorious tax haven, the British Virgin Islands, sits behind Atulya Resources.

Vinod Adani investigated over alleged scam

It is variously described in the offshore company filings as ARFT Holding Limited, AFRT Holding Limited and Atulya Resources Family Trust.

Adani Group’s filings with Australia’s corporate watchdog, ASIC, fail to mention this company, instead continuing to list Atulya Resources as the owner.

The British Virgin Islands’ company’s apparent position at the apex of the structure is disclosed in the financial reports of a series of Adani companies controlled by Vinod Adani, also known as Vinod Shantilal Adani or Vinod Shah.

Vinod Adani, the older brother of Adani Group chairman Gautam Adani, has been under investigation in India over an alleged scam designed to shift money offshore…….

October 4, 2017 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, business, climate change - global warming, secrets and lies | Leave a comment

Canadian opposition rallying against a plan for stranded nuclear wastes

Opposition mounts to radioactive waste near Ottawa River NEWS Oct 02, 2017 by Derek Dunn  Arnprior Chronicle-Guide The number of groups and individuals opposed to a planned radioactive waste disposal facility near the Ottawa River continues to mount.

A recent letter to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau by 35 scientists, doctors, elected officials, and leaders of public interest groups and First Nations, urges him to “stand up for the health and safety of Canadians” by suspending what opponents call a giant surface mound about a kilometre from the river.

Multinational corporations have formed Canadian National Energy Alliance to build the disposal facility in Chalk River. It would house contaminated materials from more than 100 buildings on the nuclear laboratories site. It would also contain a small volume of mixed waste from offsite sources.

For 90 years there has been nuclear activity on the shores of the Ottawa, with no solution in place for permanently safeguarding the radioactive waste that is continuously generated. The five-storey high mound would contain mostly low-level waste, starting in 2020, taking up to 1 million cubic metres of waste by 2070.

However, groups like Ottawa Riverkeeper and Concerned Citizens of Renfrew County and Area, worry about leachate from the site making its way into the drinking water for 1 million people.

……McNab/Braeside Coun. Mark MacKenzie, a former Green Party of Canada president, has attended several meetings on the topic. He has also looked closely at the issues involved.

“I’ve got a lot of concerns about it,” MacKenzie said. “That it’s not deep underground tops the list.”

He said by calling it a “near surface” facility, the alliance is attempting to deceive.

The project also doesn’t conform to international standards, he added. And that while only one per cent of the waste is considered of medium level, it will persist for hundreds of thousands of years.

“Any percentage above ground that is supposed to be underground is too much.”

The landfill-grade liner proposed is also a concern, he said. It will eventually break down.

Then there are the players involved: SNC-Lavalin is in court for fraud and corruption; others are British and U.S., hence “not here for the long haul,” MacKenzie said. He said nuclear waste is a Government of Canada problem, not for private corporations.

“I’m not convinced these companies have the long-term interest of the Canadian public in mind.”

October 4, 2017 Posted by | General News | Leave a comment

A warning to investors about uranium mining company Cameco

growth in China and India likely won’t be enough to save the global nuclear industry. A report by S&P Global Ratings estimates half of the 99 nuclear reactors currently operating in the United States could be taken offline in the next 17 years. That’s the equivalent of shutting all nuclear reactors in France or Japan — the second- and third-largest atomic powered countries, respectively, by installed capacity. The report thinks America could be nuclear-free by 2055. 

Worse, changing political tides in Japan don’t look favorable for nuclear power.

While there’s much uncertainty about where Cameco will be in five years, the current trend doesn’t look very favorable. Investors beware. 

Where Will Cameco Corporation Be in 5 Years? Most of the uranium miner’s supply contracts expire by 2021. What happens after that?, The Motley Fool Maxx Chatsko, Oct 3, 2017 The world’s largest uranium miner has been reeling in a long, drawn-out state of misery since the Fukushima nuclear disaster in 2011. Many industrialized nations have revisited their long-term power-generation strategies to include a future without atomic energy. The rise of emission-free wind and solar energy, which continues to outpace even the most optimistic projections, makes it even easier to envision a world with diminishing reliance on nuclear power.

None of that has stopped Cameco Corp (NYSE:CCJ) bulls or management from predicting a brighter future ahead. The company has slashed operations and kept a remarkably healthy balance sheet throughout uranium’s multiyear slide as a global commodity. While it appears to be making all of the right moves today, every day the company inches closer to an existential line in the sand: the year 2021.

That is the year most of its supply contracts expire. Given the current uncertainty surrounding nuclear power, investors shouldn’t be so sure the next round of renewals will be executed in a shareholder-friendly manner. That leads us to ask, where will Cameco Corp be in five years?

The coming contract cliff Continue reading

October 4, 2017 Posted by | General News | Leave a comment

Minerals Council of Australia – a wealthy lobby on behalf of foreign corporations

  • Major members of the MCA are majority foreign-owned (BHP and Rio 70 per cent plus) and Glencore and Peabody owned in Switzerland and the US respectively. Therefore this is an organisation which effectively represents overseas interests.

The Minerals Council, coal and the half a billion spent by the resources lobby by Michael West | Oct 2, 2017 There is no peak body in the country which conducts its business as belligerently, and its proponents would say as successfully, as the Minerals Council of Australia (MCA).

Flush with funding thanks to the contributions of its multinational mining company members such as BHP, Rio and Swiss-owned coal giant Glencore, the miners’ peak body can raise a campaign warchest at a moment’s notice. And it is uncompromising, often venomous, in its rhetoric.

In 2010, the MCA managed to oust a sitting prime minister, Kevin Rudd, from office with a $22 million advertising blitz against the mining tax.

Earlier this year in the Western Australian state elections, the leader of the National Party, Brendon Grylls, lost his seat after the mining lobby campaigned against his proposal for higher taxes on iron ore producers.

Meanwhile, Rio Tinto booked a net profit of $6 billion profit for 2016, while BHP handed down a first-half profit of $4.2 billion.

An investigation of the financial statements of the MCA shows the not-for-profit association has booked revenues of more than $200 million over the past 11 years. Revenues peaked at $35 million, $32 million and $37 million in 2010, 2011 and 2012 when the group was busy fighting the mining tax, the carbon tax and the Renewable Energy Target.

This is but a fraction of the story however. Continue reading

October 4, 2017 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, politics | Leave a comment

Extreme heat days to come, for Australia’s cities

Sydney and Melbourne should prepare for 50-degree days, climate researchers warn, Climate scientists from two leading Australian universities say more extreme heatwaves are inevitable even if global CO2 targets are met. By James Elton-Pym

 Australia’s most populous cities could be hit by heatwaves of up to 50 degrees by the year 2050 even if the world succeeds in limiting global warming to two degrees above pre-industrial levels, climate scientists have warned.

Under the Paris climate agreement 166 countries, including Australia, pledged to stop global average temperatures rising more than two degrees over the levels before the Industrial Revolution.

But the researchers warn a global rise of two degrees on average could see the hottest Australian days get 3.8 degrees hotter than current records. ANU co-author Dr Sophie Lewis said a certain amount of global warming was already “locked in”, and Australia would need to take steps to prepare.

“If we have the globe warming by 1.5 degrees we’re going to get very extremely hot days in Australia and they do have very serious consequences,” Dr Lewis said.

“We’re going to end up where we really have to be prepared and have alert systems for those hot days, just as people do in North America or Europe in terms of blizzards.”

She said the hotter temperatures would take a toll on human health, infrastructure and delicate ecosystems like the Great Barrier Reef. Heatwaves would be more intense and longer-lasting, she said.

Schoolkids would likely need to stay home on more hot days, and adult workers may also find the heat preventing them from working more frequently.

The study was published in ‘Geophysical Research Letters’ by researchers from the Australian National University and the University of Melbourne.

Dr Lewis said 50-degree heatwaves for the major cities could come between the year 2040 and 2050, depending on the rate of global carbon dioxide emissions.

“We’ll only be ready for those if we take that  seriously and start planning for them now, just like we would for bushfires.”

Dr Lewis said the exact amount of global warming would make a big difference to maximum temperatures. The difference between 1.5 degrees and two degrees might sound insubstantial but would cross various environmental thresholds, she said.

October 4, 2017 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, climate change - global warming | Leave a comment

Are Trump’s Tweets Undercutting U.S. Diplomacy?

Beyond apparent policy disagreements between the president and Rex Tillerson, the State Department struggles to absorb mixed signals. The Atlantic, KRISHNADEV CALAMUR 3 OCT 17, President Trump’s tweets Sunday, declaring it a waste of time to try to negotiate with North Korea, appeared to contradict the sentiments of his own chief diplomat, who is at least formally taking the lead on the administration’s North Korea policy. It wasn’t the first time the two men seemed to express different positions on significant foreign-policy issues. But there’s a deeper story beyond whatever temperamental or policy gulf may exist between Trump and Tillerson as individuals—and that is how the contradictions affect the sprawling foreign-policy apparatus Tillerson is supposed to run.


“One can never be sure whether the policies we’re working on will be supported by the president or not,” a State Department official, who was not authorized to speak to the press and asked for anonymity, told me. “It creates a great deal of uncertainty and obviously further harms morale in an environment in which morale is already very low.”……

at the State Department, reports about poor morale have abounded since Tillerson assumed his position in February. The secretary was described as aloof, his plans to reorganize the State Department were criticized, and the Trump administration’s proposal to cut the department’s budget by 30 percent was met with horror. A hiring freeze at the department, combined with the fact that most of the senior positions requiring Senate confirmation are still vacant, have also resulted in multiple news reports about dysfunction.

Added to all this is the perception that Trump doesn’t care about the work the State Department is doing. The president has not only appeared to contradict Tillerson publicly on Qatar, NATO, and Iran—besides North Korea—he has also appeared to suggest that his “America First” message is not simpatico with multilateral cooperation with America’s traditional allies.

At one point, he thanked Russia for its expulsion of U.S. diplomats in retaliation for a similar step by the Obama administration, as well as its seizure of Russian compounds in the U.S., because, in Trump’s words, “we’re trying to cut down our payroll.”…..

October 4, 2017 Posted by | General News | Leave a comment

Queensland council saves $1.9m in grid costs from single Tesla Powerpack

A Queensland local government council has installed what is believed to be Australia’s first off-grid solar and battery storage system to use a Tesla Powerpack, to maintain local drinking water quality around the clock.

October 4, 2017 Posted by | Queensland, storage | Leave a comment


THE ADANI LIST: COMPANIES THAT COULD MAKE OR BREAK THE CARMICHAEL COAL PROJECT  Adani’s plans to dig up hundreds of millions of tonnes of dirty Galilee Basin coal are gargantuan, requiring input from a range of project partners. And every company that helps this nightmare become a reality would be partly responsible for the environmental and climate devastation the Carmichael project stands to inflict.

High risk companies, which have known links with Adani or the Carmichael project, are featured below [on original] . Hover over or tap on the company logos to learn how each is connected, [on original] and click to take action. Further down the page [on original] is a more comprehensive list of companies that may be involved, broken down by sector……….
Who We Are

‘Market Forcesbelieves that the banks, superannuation funds and governments
that have custody of our money should use it to protect not damage our environment.

‘Our work exposes the institutions that are financing environmentally destructive projects
and help Australians hold these institutions accountable.

‘We work with the community to prevent investment in projects
that would harm the environment and drive global warming.’

How We Work

‘Market Forces is proud to be an affiliate project of Friends of the Earth Australia
and a member of the BankTrack international network,
connecting us with passionate campaigners, environmental issue experts
and advocates of environmentally sustainable behaviour from the finance sector.’

Our Vision

‘Our vision is a future where institutions invest with a high degree of respect for the environment,
utilising our money to deliver solutions to major environmental issues, and
where the community holds to account the custodians of their money
to ensure it is used to benefit the environment.’

October 4, 2017 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, business, climate change - global warming, Queensland | Leave a comment

40 large Catholic Institutions Seek Climate Action, shun fossil fuel investments

Shunning Fossil Fuels, 40 Catholic Groups Seek Climate Action, Scientific American 
The coalition is the largest number of Catholic institutions to team up for a shift to green energy 
By Alister DoyleReuters on October 3, 2017  OSLO (Reuters) – Forty Roman Catholic groups said on Tuesday they were shunning investments in fossil fuels and urged others to follow suit.

The coalition was the largest number of Catholic institutions, in countries including Australia, South Africa, Britain and the United States, to team up for a shift to greener energies, the Global Catholic Climate Movement said.

Among those taking part was Assisi’s Sacro Convento and other Catholic institutions in the Italian town, birthplace of Saint Francis, who inspired Pope Francis.

The “joint divestment from fossil fuels is based on both their shared value of environmental protection and the financial wisdom of preparing for a carbon-neutral economy,” the Global Catholic Climate Movement said.

It did not estimate the value of their fossil fuel holdings. Several, contacted by Reuters, said they had few or none to sell and wanted mainly to rule out future investments and urge others to divest.

The Assisi municipality allied itself with the 40. “Many people say that Assisi is the city on the mountain – all people can see the choices, political and environmental, that Assisi takes,” mayor Stefania Proietti told Reuters.

She said the town was investing in cleaner energy, such as solar panels on rooftops, and electric vehicles……..

The Catholic Church claims 1.2 billion members.

Ben Caldecott, founding director of the Oxford sustainable finance programme at the University of Oxford, said: “Groups with moral authority, religious groups being a good example, are likely to have a disproportionate impact in terms of increasing stigma” of investing in fossil fuels.

The International Energy Agency projects that fossil fuels will account for more than half of world energy demand in 2040, even with a big green shift. Fossil fuel companies such as Exxon Mobil or Royal Dutch Shell say they are limiting emissions.

“Today’s announcement is a further sign we are on the way to achieving our collective mission,” said Christiana Figueres, the U.N.’s climate chief at the time of the Paris Agreement. “We still have a long way to go, however.”

October 4, 2017 Posted by | General News | Leave a comment

4 October REneweconomy news

  Trump gives Turnbull blueprint to defend coal and “fight the future”
  • He may already had one, but prime minister Malcolm Turnbull has just been given a blueprint by the Trump administration on how to protect dirty “baseload” coal, and extend his fight against the energy future.
  • Australia’s New Energy Solar completes US$62.5 million private placement.
    New Energy Solar Fund and New Energy Solar Limited are pleased to announce the financial close of an issue of US$62.5 million of senior secured 24-year amortising notes in the US private placement market.
  • Tesla post record deliveries, but Model 3 production not yet jumping
    Q3 was Tesla’s best quarter ever for deliveries but Model 3 deliveries were lower than anticipated, due to production restraints.
  • CEFC provides $98.5m debt finance to Victoria solar farm
    CEFC to provide all debt finance for Victoria’s largest solar farm to “accelerate” project.
  • Know your NEM: Gas deal underlines attraction of renewables
    Origin gas deal underlines one of the main advantages of renewables: they provide security against rising fossil fuel prices.
    Graph of the Day: How wind energy trumped Liddell in September
    Australia wind farms enjoy record output in September, with average capacity factor of 49.5% – significantly more than the Liddell coal generator.
    Brisbane Airport to be world leader for biojet fuel
    Brisbane is set to become one of a handful of hubs around the world for sustainable aviation fuel.
    Tech Mahindra and Power Ledger unite to unleash the power of MaaS
    Technology trials in Microgrid-as-a-Service aimed to impact the urban population in India.

October 4, 2017 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, energy | Leave a comment