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Thursday 4 August 2016

Welcome to Environment Victoria's news wrap - your daily summary of news on our environment.

Safe Climate
The climate crisis is already here – but no one’s telling us

The media largely relegate the greatest challenge facing humanity to footnotes as industry and politicians hurtle us towards systemic collapse of the planet

Rio Olympics: don’t break 1.5C record, say athletes
[Climate Home]

Campaign launches to promote clean energy and sustainable lifestyles, with stars backing #sport4climate

Solar Beats Out Coal In UK For 2nd Whole Month Ever
[Clean Technica]

For the second month this year, solar electricity generation beat out coal in the UK across the whole month of July, after doing it for the first time ever in May.

Proof That Trump Cares More About Coal Money Than Coal Miners
[Huffington Post]

Coal companies have been shedding jobs for three decades, and the industry’s decline over the last five years has more to do with market dynamics than government policy.
Healthy Rivers
Murray Darling Basin towns ‘missing out on funds’
[Weekly Times]

STRUGGLING communities in the Murray Darling Basin’s north are missing out on vital funding that could help them adapt to their changing landscapes, a NSW mayor says.
Rare wild lily gets a hand from local community group
[Australian Geographic]

A THREATENED SPECIES of wild lily endemic to Victoria and Tasmania is getting a leg-up from a Melbourne community group, with the help of the Victorian State Government.

Balancing act
[LV Express]

As the Latrobe Valley's power stations head towards closure, the government has announced a number of renewable energy schemes, including the development of a $650 million, 96-turbine wind farm near Dundonnell. But the Australian Energy Council has cited South Australia's recent power crisis as a word of warning.
Turnbull government order CSIRO U-turn towards climate science
[The Age]

New Science Minister Greg Hunt has ordered a major U-turn in the direction of the CSIRO, reviving climate research as a bedrock function just months after the national science agency slashed climate staff and programs.

Josh Frydenberg ‘out of step’ on gas
[Weekly Times]

The Victorian MP maintained his stance against the moratorium this week, leading environmental critics to say he was out of step with the rest of the state — and his Victorian Coalition colleagues.

The solution to Australia’s gas crisis is not more gas
[The Conversation]

Eastern Australia has plenty of gas. The problem is that most of it is being exported at prices lower than some Australians are paying. And the price volatility resulting from the present shambles is making life difficult for some Australian industries.

BNEF says broken gas market main offender in SA energy “crisis”
[Renew Economy]

Another independent analyst report has cleared renewable energy of most of the blame for South Australia’s July energy “crisis”, pointing instead to Australia’s “illiquid, poorly functioning” gas market and the lack of competition as the main causes of the recent price spikes.

Banks 'behind the curve' on renewable energy lending

Australia's big four banks have poured almost four times as much money into the fossil fuel industry as the renewable energy sector since the landmark Paris climate accord last December, according to campaign group Market Forces.

My super, my future: Australians put their money where their morals are

A new report shows conscientious consumers are willing to back ethical and sustainable investments that have a strong social and environmental impact

Land clearing in NSW accelerates with almost two-thirds of it 'unexplained'
[The Age]

The amount of land in NSW being cleared for crops and pasture is accelerating, with almost two-thirds of the tally in 2012-13 "unexplained" and possibly illegal, ecologists and environmental groups say.

Minister leaves door open on new probe into Hydro Tasmania's cloud seeding program

The Tasmanian Government is not ruling out an independent inquiry into Hydro Tasmania's cloud seeding operations.

Grid-scale battery storage ready to go in Australia: Garnaut
[Renew Economy]

Leading Australian economist and energy policy advisor Ross Garnaut has called for the adoption of grid-scale battery storage on Australia’s National Electricity Market, which he says would provide an “immediate” solution to integrating increasing amounts of grid-connected wind and solar and preventing future electricity price spikes.

Australia committed to protection of rainforests: Josh Frydenberg
[The Australian]

Protection of the world’s great tropical rainforests would continue to be a key part of Australia’s climate change response, federal environment minister Josh Frydenberg has said.

Landmark study: AAA to test car tailpipe emissions in real world driving in Australia

THE tailpipe emissions of Australia’s top-selling cars will be put to the test in real-world driving conditions. The landmark study comes in the wake of the diesel emissions cheating scandal that affected 11 million Volkswagen cars globally and close to 90,000 locally.
Sustainable Living
Heads up motorists, there's a new cyclist in town
[The Age]

I recently decided to take the plunge and start cycling to work because I have set some ambitious savings goals and discovered I could save $100 a month bus fare by cycling the 10 kilometres.

How the Tiny Pieces of Plastic in Our Oceans Are ‘Terrifying’ for Humans
[Epoch Times]

These “microplastics,” sometimes thinner than human hair, are now in 85–90 percent of some fish populations, albeit in relatively small quantities, says Richard Thompson, a marine biology professor at Plymouth University... We humans then eat the fish.

The Psychology Behind Why People Don't Recycle
[Huffington Post]

“Recycling is a behavior,” Brian Iacoviello, an assistant psychiatry professor at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City told The Huffington Post. “Much like exercising or eating healthily, people often engage in this behavior less than they ‘should.’”

Italy tackles food waste with law encouraging firms to donate food

Restaurant customers will be encouraged to use doggy bags as part of move to save 1m tonnes of food a year
Natural World
Can ‘climate corridors’ help species adapt to warming world?
[The Conversation]

In a recent study, my colleagues and I examined where human impacts prevent plants, animals and insects from migrating to comfortable climates as temperatures continue rising.

The Strange, ‘Almost Spooky’ Story Of The British Ghost Orchid
[Huffington Post]

Let the twenty-somethings hunt for Pokemon characters on their smartphones. This is an older game of hide-and-seek—just as obsessive and every bit as crazy.

Perth starfish mystery after about 200 found dead on city's southern beaches

Hundreds of dead starfish have washed ashore on Perth's southern beaches with tests underway to try to determine what killed them.

Large carnivores under threat as prey they depend on decline
[New Scientist]

Large carnivores around the world are increasingly at risk of going hungry as the prey species they depend on for survival decline, research has shown.
The fine print:

The daily news wrap provides a summary of freely available online content and news that relates to Environment Victoria and our campaigns. It does not include any content sourced from subscription based services.

This wrap is primarily a service for Environment Victoria staff who wish to keep apprised of the day's environmental news and the media's take on issues relevant to our campaigns. We extend this service to our members and supporters for free in the interests of keeping our networks up to date on the latest news. However, we cannot guarantee that every article on every environmental issue will be included in our news wraps.

Inclusion of an article in our news wrap does not amount to an endorsement of that article, or represent any guarantee as to its accuracy.
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Authorised by Mark Wakeham, CEO Environment Victoria, 60 Leicester Street Carlton.