Australian news, and some related international items

July 27 Energy News — geoharvey

World: ¶ “Wind and solar power could provide more than third of Europe’s energy by 2030” • By trading energy between countries with different weather, Europe could make the most of wind and solar power, a study of future of weather and energy in Europe indicated. Europe could use renewables for over two-thirds of its […]

via July 27 Energy News — geoharvey

July 27, 2018 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

AEMC gives huge boost to solar PV and batteries — RenewEconomy

AEMC rule changes would give consumers more control over the energy market, and reduce the ability of generators to exploit their market power. This could be a huge win.

via AEMC gives huge boost to solar PV and batteries — RenewEconomy

July 27, 2018 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

EV fast-charging network to roll-out in Australia after funding boost — RenewEconomy

Fast Cities Australia secures $7m to start work on a 42 station EV fast-charging “national backbone” which it says will “calatyse” Australia’s electric vehicle industry.

via EV fast-charging network to roll-out in Australia after funding boost — RenewEconomy

July 27, 2018 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

More US NRC Safety Related Exemptions for Holtec: Increase Risk of a Criticality Accident and are Illegal (Comment Deadline July 30th, 11:59 pm) — Mining Awareness +

Originally posted on Mining Awareness + : Forget North Korea, Holtec and its owner Kris Singh is the biggest nuclear menace. Holtec’s nuclear “spent fuel” canisters are already a flimsy 1/2 inch thick, for the sealed metal part which protects the public from radiation, even though they are huge, as seen in the picture. The concrete surrounding…

via More US NRC Safety Related Exemptions for Holtec: Increase Risk of a Criticality Accident and are Illegal (Comment Deadline July 30th, 11:59 pm) — Mining Awareness +

July 27, 2018 Posted by | Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Victoria’s biggest solar farm reaches financial close, to power steel works — RenewEconomy

Numurkah solar farm, which will help power Laverton steel works and Victoria trams, reaches financial close, with developers Neoen wondering why Australia is not more ambitious about renewables.

via Victoria’s biggest solar farm reaches financial close, to power steel works — RenewEconomy

July 27, 2018 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Nuclear industry bigwig Jim McDowell now boss of South Australia’s public sector

JimMcDowell, most recently CEO of BAE Systems Saudi Arabia, now chair of Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation 

South Aust gets new public sector boss, 

Former BAE Systems chief executive Jim McDowell has been appointed to head up South Australia’s Department of Premier and Cabinet.

Premier Steven Marshall described Mr McDowell as a talented leader with decades of international business experience in industries critical to South Australia’s future prosperity.

“Mr McDowell is well placed to guide the South Australian public sector as we seek to take full advantage of the Commonwealth’s naval shipbuilding program and other defence contracts based in South Australia,” Mr Marshall said on Thursday.

July 27, 2018 Posted by | politics, South Australia | Leave a comment

Nuclear waste dump opposed by Aboriginals, and will stigmatise the whole State of South Australia

Dump opposition, Adelaide Advertiser, JILLIAN MARSH, 25 July 18 

AS AN Adnyamathanha person I confirm that the overwhelming majority of Adnyamathanha do not support the proposed nuclear waste dump.

Our Native Title body reflects this position. We have clearly stated our opposition from the very beginning of this imposed government and industry process. Our rights to say no must be respected on cultural grounds, as well as on environmental and economic grounds.

All the evidence we have provided to date supports this. We ask that government and industry do the right thing and back off, leave us alone, listen to what we have to say, hear what we have to say.

Nuclear stigma R. WOOD, Valley View

THE majority of South Australians do not want a nuclear waste dump built at Kimba or near Hawker to house Australia’s nuclear waste according to a recent poll (The Advertiser, 24/7/18). It is the whole of SA who will bear the stigma of being the national nuclear waste state, just as we are successfully benefiting from our clean, green agriculture, food and tourism industries.

July 27, 2018 Posted by | General News | Leave a comment

If anything goes wrong with the nuclear dump, will Kimba be held responsible?

Kimba for sale  Eyre Peninsula Tribune, JAMES SHEPHERDSON, Kimba, 26 July 18

Correct me if I’m wrong, but I have always presumed there to be a general consensus that if one is being paid in any form, one must surely have an item or product for sale.

For instance, if one grows and sells a tonne of grain, one would expect to be paid.

Also, the buyer of that grain expects to receive exactly what they have paid for.

When it comes to the proposed national radioactive waste repository, we may well ask ourselves the question ‘what is this federal government encouraging us to sell?’

Are we selling our future rights to hold the federal government to account should any negative impacts of this facility come to fruition? By receiving payment are we accepting responsibility on behalf of the government?

If this facility were to be here, there is no doubt that if any event led to the government and associated authorities being questioned, we or our descendants will promptly be reminded of the voluntary process and of our willingness to host it.

When financial prosperity becomes such a priority to a point where potential consequences are ignored, one must ask the question, is there anything or anyone not for sale?


July 27, 2018 Posted by | General News | Leave a comment

Climate change is increasing the risks of heatwaves

It’s a savage summer in the Northern Hemisphere – and climate change is slashing the odds of more heatwaves

In Australia we know about sweltering summer heat. We all remember the images of burned koala pawscollapsing tennis players and, far more seriously, the tragic events of Black Saturday.

Aussies may scoff at Britain’s idea of a heatwave, but this time it’s the real deal and it’s no laughing matter.

Extreme heat has hit locations throughout the Northern Hemisphere, in places as far apart as MontrealGlasgowTokyo and Lapland. In the past few weeks heat records have tumbled in a wide range of places, most notably:

Heat has not been the only problem. Much of northern Europe is experiencing a very persistent drought, with little to no measurable rainfall in months. This has caused the normally lush green fields of England and other European countries to turn brown and even reveal previously hidden archaeological monuments.

There have also been major wildfires in northern EnglandSweden and, most recently and devastatingly, Greece. The Greek wildfires came off the back of a very dry winter and spring.

What’s behind the widespread extreme heat?

The jet stream, a high-altitude band of air that pushes weather systems around at lower altitudes, has been weaker than normal. It has also been positioned unusually far to the north, particularly over Europe. This has kept the low-pressure systems that often drive wind and rain over northern Europe at bay.

The jet stream has remained locked in roughly the same position over the Atlantic Ocean and northern Europe for the past couple of months. This has meant that the same weather types have remained over the same locations most of the time.

Weather is typically more transient than it has been recently. Even when we do have blocking high-pressure systems associated with high temperatures in northern Europe, they don’t normally linger as long as this.

Is it driven by climate change?

Although climatologists have made great strides in recent years in the field of event attribution – identifying the human climate fingerprint on particular extreme weather events – it is hard to quantify the role of climate change in an event that is still unfolding.

Until the final numbers are in we won’t be able to tell just how much climate change has altered the likelihood or intensity of these particular heat extremes.

Having said that, we can use past analyses of extreme heat events, together with future climate change projections, to infer whether climate change is playing a role in these events.

We also know that increasing numbers of hot temperature records are being set, and that the increased probability of hot temperature records can indeed be attributed to the human influence on the climate.

In Europe especially, there is already a large body of literature that has looked at the role of human-caused climate change in heat extremes. In fact, the very first event attribution study, led by Peter Stott from the UK Met Office, found that human-caused climate change had at least doubled the likelihood of the infamous European heatwave of 2003.

For all manner of heat extremes in Europe and elsewhere, including in Japan, a clear and discernible link with climate change has been made.

Research has also shown that heat extremes similar to those witnessed over the past month or two are expected to become more common as global temperatures continue to climb. The world has so far had around 1℃ of global warming above pre-industrial levels, but at the global warming limits proposed in the Paris climate agreement, hot summers like that of 2003 in central Europe would be a common occurrence.

At 2℃ of global warming, the higher of the two Paris targets, 2003-like hot summers would very likely happen in most years.

Similarly, we know that heat exposure and heat-induced deaths in Europe will increase with global warming, even if we can limit this warming to the levels agreed in Paris.

But summers have always been hot, haven’t they?

For most parts of the world summers have got warmer, and the hottest summer on record is relatively recent – such as 2003 in parts of central Europe and 2010 in much of eastern Europe. One exception is central England, where the hottest summer remains 1976, although it may be challenged this year.

While extreme hot summers and heatwaves did happen in the past, they were less common. One big difference as far as England is concerned is that its extreme 1976 heatwave was a global outlier, whereas this year’s isn’t.

In 1976 northwestern Europe had higher temperature anomalies than almost anywhere else on the globe. In June 2018 the same region was unusually warm, but so was most of the rest of the Northern Hemisphere.

So while the persistent weather patterns are driving much of the extreme heat we’re seeing across the Northern Hemisphere, we know that human-caused climate change is nudging the temperatures up and increasing the odds of new heat extremes.

July 27, 2018 Posted by | General News | Leave a comment