Australian news, and some related international items

Read the fine print: future funding for Kimba/Hawker nuclear waste dump is NOT guaranteed

Kim Mavromatis Fight To Stop Nuclear Waste Dump In Flinders Ranges SA  8 Dec 18Funding for Hawker / Kimba – WILL ERODE – GUARANTEED. Out of the proposed 31 million carrots, 21 million carrots will be supposedly delivered after the proposed site is built – do we really trust the fed liberal govnt to deliver the 21 million carrots after the site is built?? Read the fine print – how gullible do they think we are?? The same mob stabbed their leaders (prime ministers) in the back – told us the 10,000 barrels of radioactive waste dumped at woomera was only low level and nothing to worry about, then Rex Patrick discovers the waste includes intermediate level radioactive nuclear waste – lie after lie after lie – the fed libs deserve to get clobbered at the next election.
Gary See After this facility is approved, priority will be getting consent for the Intermediate Level facility. This is where future funding will be focused then, and the low level facility will continue operating at as minimal cost as possible. 

December 8, 2018 Posted by | Federal nuclear waste dump, South Australia | Leave a comment

Kim ABC report: Carr says that Lucas Heights getting full of nuclear waste: the evidence contradicts him

Kazzi Jai Fight To Stop Nuclear Waste Dump In Flinders Ranges SA, 8 Nov 18   Heard the North and West ABC news grab this morning regarding Kim Carr saying that…. the current site in Sydney is getting full and a new site has to be found quickly. It is unsustainable as it is and may not get further registration because of it….

This is CONTRARY to the RECORDED INFORMATION from the Senate Inquiry and NRWMF Debate from DIIS, ANSTO and ARPANSA!!

Great time (NOT) for North and West ABC to have a technical fault with their news section for today. Could have tagged a link to their North and West FB page for this comment from Kim Carr…

As Dave Sweeney ACF has said in comment – the Government has only two modes of action – Urgency or Backburner!
Kazzi Jai The thing is…the dump has been on the parliamentary agenda for how long now? At least 40 years if not longer! In fact the first nuclear research reactor began operating at Lucas Heights in 1958 – HIFAR, which then was replaced by OPAL in 2007.
There is NO urgency! And Lucas Heights was built with the intention that they would store their nuclear waste on site! They still have ample room to do so! 

December 8, 2018 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Federal nuclear waste dump | Leave a comment

Bushfires near Kimba, proposed site for nuclear waste dump

Adelaide weather: Another scorcher as KI bushfire continues to burn, Adelaide Now Gabe Polychronis, Mitch Mott, The Advertiser, December 7, 2018 A large bushfire continues to burn on Kangaroo Island, as the CFS bring in dozens of reinforcement firefighters and trucks ahead of expected wind charges later today.

December 8, 2018 Posted by | climate change - global warming, Federal nuclear waste dump, South Australia | Leave a comment

Fabricated media attacks on Julian Assange

The attempt to implicate WikiLeaks in a Russian plot has no less anti-democratic motives. It is aimed at justifying the prosecution of Julian Assange on charges of “conspiracy” with a foreign power to manipulate the outcome of the 2016 election, rather than the sealed charges of espionage that were filed against him in late 2010, after WikiLeaks published documents that exposed US war crimes in Iraq and Afghanistan and international diplomatic intrigues.
The Guardian attack on Assange exposed as politically-motivated fabrication,, By James Cogan , 6 December 2018Last week’s sensationalist allegation by the Guardian newspaper, that WikiLeaks publisher Julian Assange met with Paul Manafort, American political lobbyist and one-time campaign manager for Donald Trump, has been exposed as a politically-motivated tissue of lies. Continue reading

December 8, 2018 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, secrets and lies | Leave a comment

No Australian policy on climate change as Melissa Price, Minister For Coal, heads off to U.N. climate talks

No climate consensus at ministers meeting–spt.html, Angus Livingston, , Australian Associated Press, 7 December 2018

Australia’s state environment ministers are refusing to agree to a joint statement on climate change until the federal minister comes up with a plan to tackle it.

Melissa Price met with her state counterparts in Canberra on Friday and asked them to endorse a statement for her to take to a climate meeting in Katowice, Poland, on Saturday.

They refused because the government has no plan to tackle the problem.

“What I had suggested was that we had an agreed statement that we would all work together to determine an action plan with respect to climate, with respect to things that we can do individually and collectively,” Ms Price told reporters on Friday.

“Sadly that was not agreed. There was not an agreement on the words that I proposed, and no one proposed alternative words.”

The Labor governments of Queensland, Victoria, Western Australia, the Northern Territory and the ACT released a joint statement condemning the lack of action.

“The science is frightening, unequivocal and clear – we are running out of time,” the statement said.

“Yet the response of successive Liberal prime ministers has been one of delusion and deliberate inaction.

“It is unacceptable that any action on climate change has again been left off the agenda at today’s meeting.”

The states demanded a boost to Australia’s overall output of renewable energy, stronger energy efficiency targets, and action on emissions across all sectors.

“It is time for the federal government to stop ‘noting’ the science around the impacts of climate change, and actually step up and take action,” Queensland Environment Minister Leeanne Enoch said.

“It is unacceptable that there has been no progress on climate change by the federal government.”

Ms Enoch said she asked Ms Price to come back to the next meeting with an action plan of how to respond to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report’s findings about the dangers of 1.5 degree global warming.

“Unfortunately, the federal environment minister would not agree to undertake that important work,” she said.

December 8, 2018 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, climate change - global warming, politics | 1 Comment

Deploying short- and medium-range missiles in Eastern European countries will turn them into a military staging ground

Eastern Europe may become ‘nuclear desert’ – Russian military expert

December 8, 2018 Posted by | General News | Leave a comment

livestream on December 16: What next in the fight to free Julian Assange?

Meeting -Sydney – Sunday 16 December: Facebook Livestream viewing in Melbourne:
rallies will demand that the Australian government exercise its undeniable diplomatic and legal powers to insist that the British government immediately and unconditionally allow Assange to leave the United Kingdom and return to Australia if he so chooses. The courageous journalist must be provided with a guarantee, by both the Coalition and Labor, that Canberra will categorically reject any US application for Assange’s extradition
SEP meeting and livestream on December 16: What next in the fight to free Julian Assange?  By the Socialist Equality Party (Australia) , 28 November 2018As this year draws to a close, WikiLeaks publisher and Australian citizen Julian Assange remains effectively imprisoned inside the Ecuadorian embassy in London, denied sunlight and medical care, and blocked from communicating with the outside world. A court document, which surfaced in November, confirms that the US government has filed and sealed criminal charges against Assange, on the basis that his media organisation, WikiLeaks, published leaked information revealing US war crimes and anti-democratic imperialist intrigues.

The information vindicates the fight waged by Assange and his defenders against an arrest warrant, issued against him in 2010, obligating him to answer “questions” over false allegations that he had committed sexual assault in Sweden. The allegations were fabricated in order to provide ammunition for various pro-US layers to discredit Assange and to create the conditions for him to be rendered to a country that could rapidly extradite him to the US. The American ruling elite is determined to make an example of Assange by putting him on trial for “espionage” or “conspiracy,” in order to intimidate every journalist and whistleblower. Continue reading

December 8, 2018 Posted by | ACTION | Leave a comment

Evacuation orders in place as Little River grass fire burns out of control

Olivia Shying, Geelong Advertiser, December 7, 2018 FIREFIGHTERS have managed to contain a large grassfire at Little River that threatened homes and properties.

While the evacuation orders for Mambourin and Manor communities have been downgraded to watch and act alerts, authorities warn the fire is still not under control.

Emergency Management Commissioner Andrew Crisp said the fire started just before midday near Edgars Rd at Little River.

By early afternoon the fire had burned more than 1000 hectares and had jumped across train tracks causing V/Line to suspend all services to between Geelong and Wyndham Vale……

…….EARLIER: ALL TRAINS on the Geelong line between Wyndham Vale and Waurn Ponds have been suspended due to fire danger.


December 8, 2018 Posted by | General News | Leave a comment

The fightback against Adani and Aurizon steps up

Margaret Gleeson, December 6, 2018, Issue 1206,

“A reported 20,000 students, many of them with their parents and grandparents in tow, took to the streets with a powerful message to Adani and policymakers: ignore us at your peril.

This was followed by a sit-in at Parliament House in Canberra on December 5.

Another round of #StopAdani rallies has been called in BrisbaneCairnsMelbourne and Sydney on December 8. …

Adani has jumped the gun and started work illegally. Its use of groundwater is also the subject of a federal investigation. …

“The Supreme Court must decide if Aurizon, an enormously powerful and well connected corporation, should have the power to deny a small community group the right to inform Australians how to help to prevent this climate crisis.

“Obviously the people who make up FLAC have a direct interest in the outcome, but should this corporation succeed in gagging free speech to this degree, we will all be the worse for it.

“Finally, Aurizon’s action is based on the assumption that if FLAC stops training concerned citizens on how to take non-violent, safe, direct action, people will stop taking action. Unfortunately what may well happen is that people continue to act to prevent a climate catastrophe, but do so without the training, discipline or principles of non-violence.” … ‘

ReadMuchMuchMore of  Margaret Gleeson‘s comprehensive article at the #GreenLeft

December 8, 2018 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, climate change - global warming, politics | Leave a comment

Coal lobby prominent at UN climate talks in Poland

COP24 President defends participation of coal companies at climate talks, ABC, The World By Erin Handley 7 Dec 18, COP24 President Michal Kurtyka has defended displays of coal soap and jewellery at key climate change talks in Poland, saying “it’s good to have everybody on board”.

Key points:

  • The climate talks drew some ridicule for putting coal on display in the foyer
  • New Zealand has named climate change as its biggest security threat
  • Pacific nations are facing an existential threat, Michal Kurtyka said

Conference attendees were confronted with coal displays in the foyer and greeted by a performance from the Polish Coal Miners Band during the talks designed to bring about global action on climate change.

Polish President Andrzej Duda said using coal was not in conflict with climate protection, and with the climate change talks taking place in the city of Katowice — a coal mining stronghold — some observers said the setting undermined the purpose of the talks.

Mr Kurtyka, who is also a secretary of state in the Ministry of Environment, denied that coal companies “sponsored” the event, which he said was publicly funded by Poland — but said there were several partners, including Ikea and energy companies. …….

Richie Merzian, director of the Australia Institute’s Climate and Energy Program, said the coal-heavy setting left “a sour taste in the mouths of those who are committed to climate action”.

“But at the same time it is symbolic of trying to deal with the vested interests and the long history of reliance on fossil fuels in many of these cities and countries.”

Mr Merzian added that coal companies were not on the same page as delegates seeking an ambitious plan to combat climate change.

“Their core business is directly in contrast to … the goal of the Paris Agreement, which is to transition completely away from reliance on fossil fuels,” he said, adding that the influence of coal companies on governments ran deep.

“Stopping that outright, in-your-face sponsorship would definitely help in terms of optics, but a lot of the influence is just strongly embedded into the positions that the countries bring forward.”………

Yesterday New Zealand released a defence policy statement naming climate change as its biggest security threat and stressing the impact of climate change on the Pacific.

“It identifies climate change as one of the most significant security threats of our time, and one that is already having adverse impacts both at home and in New Zealand’s neighbourhood,” said Defence Minister Ron Mark in an emailed statement to Reuters.

Australia, however, has turned its back on its Pacific neighbours in terms of climate change, Mr Merzian said.

“The Pacific are getting desperate, and instead of their friends helping, they’re hurting,” he said.

“Poland is the Australia of the EU — the largest coal user, the largest coal producer — but unlike Australia that can operate in its own bubble, Poland has to marry up its position with its EU colleagues as a bloc, and that’s why they help drag Poland to be better than what it would otherwise be.”

December 8, 2018 Posted by | General News | 1 Comment

The article that a Fairfax journalist didn’t want to write, about Julian Assange

Does anyone really think such a system could produce a fair trial?

The column I didn’t want to write about Julian Assange, SMH, By Elizabeth Farrelly, 8 December 2018  This is a piece I had no desire to write. Julian Assange, still holed up after six years in his self-imposed Knightsbridge prison, his fine view of Harrods’ Christmas lights filtered through an encircling fence of bobbies, has so thoroughly fallen from favour that even smart and kind-hearted people (and here I include self) find themselves somewhere between bored and hostile. Yet two questions remain: is this view manufactured? And, either way, should Assange be dumped into the lightless sewers of America’s imperial security system?

Assange’s welcome in the embassy is growing thin. When Ecuador throws him out, as is likely any moment, he’ll be arrested. For what? The only current charge, on an arrest warrant that a British judge recently refused to quash, is for skipping bail on a rape allegation that has since been dropped. The fear, and the reason he skipped, is that he’ll be extradited to the US to be face a secret grand jury indictment on charges of espionage for which Chelsea Manning has already been pardoned. …….
Assange’s welcome in the embassy is growing thin. When Ecuador throws him out, as is likely any moment, he’ll be arrested. For what? The only current charge, on an arrest warrant that a British judge recently refused to quash, is for skipping bail on a rape allegation that has since been dropped. The fear, and the reason he skipped, is that he’ll be extradited to the US to be face a secret grand jury indictment on charges of espionage for which Chelsea Manning has already been pardoned. So the legality of Assange’s transgression is less important than political perceptions of its public-interest value. His defence depends entirely on political intervention and, therefore, on public perception. This is why the public’s desertion of him is so critical. But is it justified?
But counterbalancing all that is the far bigger question of the American security machine, and whether we trust that to safeguard anyone’s interest but its own.  ….
 secrecy has been the anti-Assange campaign’s defining characteristic. Naturally, no one ever conceded that the rape charges were shaky or explained the prosecutor’s refusal to interview Assange in London (generating fear of a ruse to facilitate his extradition to the US). The charges have since been dropped without explanation yet America’s determination to capture Assange remains undiminished.
Back in 2011 a grand jury was convened in Virginia to determine whether Assange was indictable. Grand jury proceedings are inherently secret. Involving neither judge nor jury they are prosecutor-led, with no defendant right to a defence, attendance or even knowledge. Their findings too are secret. Thus, despite years of enduring rumours of a “sealed indictment” against Assange we know only that last month, US prosecutors inadvertently revealed that secret charges had been laid against Assange.

Put it together. An old arrest warrant for skipping bail on a charge that was always feeble and has since been dropped, a refusal to deny extradition intentions, secret charges emerging from a secret court over an act that may not even be illegal and for which the principal culprit has already been pardoned. Does anyone really think such a system could produce a fair trial?

Twitter @emfarrelly

December 8, 2018 Posted by | General News | Leave a comment

The Royal Nuclear Show — exhibition on in Victoria

Public works: Royal Nuclear Show, THE AUSTRALIAN, By BRONWYN WATSON,  DECEMBER 7, 2018

“……….Screen-printing workshops across the country, such as Redback Graphix, Earthworks Poster Collective and the Tin Sheds, created posters that adorned cafes, telephone poles, university campuses, libraries and virtually any public space. They had slogans such as No Nukes No Tests, No More Hiroshimas, and End Uranium Mining. At the time, perception of a nuclear future was seen as progressive and positive, with governments and industry trying to promote nuclear experimentation as necessary to the nation’s security and beneficial to humanity.

One artist who emphasised these issues in her poster prints was Toni Robertson, whose work, The Royal Nuclear Show — 3, is on show at the Burrinja Dandenong Ranges Cultural Centre in Upwey, Victoria. Produced while Robertson was an artist-in-residence at the Experimental Art Foundation in Adelaide in 1981, it depicts a dystopian post-nuclear carnival where crowds wander past a billboard with a baby sleeping and sucking a bottle. On the baby’s pillow is written Bomblet. The billboard reads: “Meet the nuclear family, Bomblet the baby nuke. He’s so like his dad! This little boy was conceived as a low yield, tactical weapon for use in limited theatre war.” “Little boy” was the name given to the bomb dropped on Hiroshima.

……. Gallery and exhibition curator JD Mittmann says this work “really resonates quite strongly with me. It is really a statement of the time, but I think not much has changed in some ways. We are still sold nuclear technology, especially as a solution to climate change problems. Certainly, it is important to remember how dangerous these things are, and so I think this print might have been from 1981 but if you had 2011 underneath it, it would work in just the same way.”

December 8, 2018 Posted by | ACTION, art and culture, Victoria | Leave a comment

December 7 Energy News — geoharvey

Opinion: ¶ “ExxonMobil’s Renewable Energy Commitments Are in the News – Should We Cheer?” • Media outlets have celebrated ExxonMobil’s renewable energy commitments, which now include an agreement with Denmark’s Ørsted A/S to buy 500 MW of wind and solar power. Should we cheer when fossil fuels are renewably extracted? [CleanTechnica] ¶ “Global Climate Financing as […]

via December 7 Energy News — geoharvey

December 8, 2018 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Graph of the Day: Breakdown of Australia’s two million solar homes — RenewEconomy

A state-by-state breakdown of the two million homes and businesses that now have rooftop solar. The post Graph of the Day: Breakdown of Australia’s two million solar homes appeared first on RenewEconomy.

via Graph of the Day: Breakdown of Australia’s two million solar homes — RenewEconomy

December 8, 2018 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Why AEMO needs to update its 100 per cent renewable energy study — RenewEconomy

AEMO should publish an updated 100%-renewable energy plan. A lot has changed since it last tackled the issue, with little enthusiasm, in 2013. The post Why AEMO needs to update its 100 per cent renewable energy study appeared first on RenewEconomy.

via Why AEMO needs to update its 100 per cent renewable energy study — RenewEconomy

December 8, 2018 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment