Author Archives: Sainsbury Peter

PETER SAINSBURY. Sunday environmental round up, 22 September 2019

The world’s rich countries continue to pump US$64 billion per year into coal companies, with Japan leading the charge internationally and domestically. Unhealthy environments are responsible for almost a quarter of deaths globally, but maybe if your community is in … Continue reading

Posted in Environment and climate, Health, International Affairs | 1 Comment

ANDREW GLIKSON. The ALP and the great moral challenge of our generation

There was a time when leaders fell on their sword if they were defeated in battle or lost their core beliefs. Nowadays they would not resign their privileged positions to take a stand against even the existential danger posed to … Continue reading

Posted in Environment and climate, Politics | 6 Comments

PETER SAINSBURY. Sunday environmental round up, 15 September 2019

A focus on the economic aspects of climate change this week: business-as-usual will reduce global GDP but climate action is blocked by potential financial losers; the Adani mine is viable only because of massive government subsidies, while in India investment … Continue reading

Posted in Environment and climate, Politics | 4 Comments

ANDREW GLIKSON. From climate denial to planetary arson. The planetary consequences of injecting >910 billion tons CO2 into the atmosphere

Last night (6 September) as fires were raging through the desiccated granite belt of southern Queensland, not a single reporter, politician or anyone else had the “temerity” of pointing out the inevitable relation between coal mining, carbon emissions, global and … Continue reading

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PETER SAINSBURY. Sunday environmental round up, 8 September 2019

An update on the Adani mine to start and on Sydney’s Sea-eagle chicks to close. In the middle of the sandwich is evidence demonstrating the lethal effects of air pollution and the health benefits of reducing even apparently low levels … Continue reading

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PETER SAINSBURY. Revolving doors and roulette wheels

CBD is the daily scuttlebutt column in the Sydney Morning Herald. Monday’s offerings included a piece that provided examples of the revolving door for staff between the inaptly named Responsible Wagering Australia and the ALP. I strongly recommend it.

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ANDREW GLIKSON. The global significance of the Amazon and Siberian fires

As fires rage across tens of thousands of square kilometers of the Amazon forest, dubbed the Planet’s lungs as it produces some 20 percent of the oxygen in the atmosphere, some 72,843 fires are burning in Brazil this year. Fires … Continue reading

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PETER SAINSBURY. Sunday environmental round up, 1 September 2019

Ship owners start to clean up their highly polluting fuel; forests are being felled and burned around the world but ordinary Brazilians want more done to prevent the loss of their iconic rainforest; and the fashion industry starts walking the … Continue reading

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NATASHA STOTT DESPOJA. Celebrating Women Humanitarians

On 19th  August, World Humanitarian Day, events around the world paid tribute to the women who serve on the frontline of humanitarian responses to disasters. They are often the first to respond and the last to leave, and yet their … Continue reading

Posted in Human Rights, International Affairs | 1 Comment

PETER SAINSBURY. Sunday environmental round up, 25 August 2019

Ocean scientists express the need for urgent action in eight policy areas to restore the health of the world’s oceans, while an article in the BMJ highlights the links between ocean health and human health. Australia’s current review of air … Continue reading

Posted in Environment and climate, Politics | 3 Comments

PETER SAINSBURY. Sunday environmental round up, 18 August 2019

A new report from the IPCC focusing on land and climate change draws together many threads from the environmental and social crises facing the world. CO2 emissions from fossil fuels are of course the major cause of global warming but … Continue reading

Posted in Environment and climate, Health, Politics | 3 Comments

ANDREW GLIKSON. The changing face of planet Earth

With atmospheric CO2-equivalent greenhouse gas concentrations now above 500 ppm and average global warming approaching 1.5oC, there is a clear shift in the world’s climate zones, displayed for example on maps of the expanding wet tropical zones, drying sub-tropical latitudes and polar-ward … Continue reading

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PETER SAINSBURY. Sunday environmental round up, 11 August 2019

Last week we were deep in the oceans. This week we’re high in the sky: the global warming effect of air travel and ways of reducing it: technology, government intervention, industry initiatives, personal behaviour change and buying carbon offsets. And … Continue reading

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PETER SAINSBURY. Sunday environmental round up, 4 August 2019

With apologies for the anthropomorphism, Sydney’s newly-hatched Sea-Eagles would like this week’s round up as it focuses on their future habitats: land and marine environments (with good news about soil carbon and regenerative farming and not good news about deforestation … Continue reading

Posted in Environment and climate, Politics | 2 Comments

ANDREW GLIKSON. $trillion space games and false prophecies by billionaires while Rome burns

History testifies to powerful rulers’ aspirations for the position of gods, including the Pharaohs and Roman Emperors such as Caligula or Nero, nowadays mimicked by false messianic prophecies of “intergalactic civilization” made by billionaires and their followers in public and … Continue reading

Posted in Environment and climate, Technology, start-ups and new media | 5 Comments

PETER DAVIDSON. Multiplication’s the name of the game: infrastructure and Newstart trump tax cuts as an economic stimulus

When growth is slowing and interest rates are falling, the evidence indicates that a timely investment in social housing and an increase in Newstart are more likely to boost growth in jobs and incomes and provide better value than tax … Continue reading

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PETER SAINSBURY. Sunday environmental round up, 28 July 2019

Hunger is on the increase again and the world will need yet more food over the next three decades. How can we properly feed 10 billion people and save the planet? Do the solutions lie in technology, behaviour change or … Continue reading

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PETER SAINSBURY. Sunday environmental round up, 21 July 2019

The close connection between climate change and loss of biodiversity is finally receiving the attention it deserves, particularly the need to halt deforestation and begin massive programs of reforestation. Vales Point power station in NSW provides an indication of the … Continue reading

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PETER SAINSBURY. Sunday environmental round up, 14 July 2019

The ALP supports the Adani mine in the Senate, assisting Australia’s exported carbon emissions to increase greatly. The USA’s coal industry continues to decline but not without first screwing the workers and the environment to maximise short term rewards at … Continue reading

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PETER SAINSBURY. Sunday environmental round up, 7 July 2019

While the Australian government continues to obfuscate and avoid any real action on climate change, other nations are ignoring the ‘our emissions are too small to make a difference’ argument and demonstrating ambition and leadership. Asian countries could help their … Continue reading

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PETER SAINSBURY. Sunday environmental round up, 30 June 2019

In the USA young people are trying to lodge a legal case against the federal government for failing to protect their constitutional rights, and health professionals are supporting them strongly. Indeed, frustrated at government inaction, health people are getting increasingly … Continue reading

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ANDREW GLIKSON. Beyond climate tipping points: greenhouse gas levels exceed the stability limit of the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets

The pace of global warming has been grossly underestimated. As the world keeps increasing its carbon emissions, rising in 2018 to a record 33.1 billion ton CO2 per year, the atmospheric greenhouse gas level has now exceeded 560 ppm (parts … Continue reading

Posted in Environment and climate | 4 Comments

PETER SAINSBURY. Sunday environmental round up, 23 June 2019

Poor planning seems to be endemic in the gas industry. Despite clear evidence that gas is not low in emissions, not needed for grid reliability, not a viable transition fuel and not cheap, governments and gas producers continue to peddle … Continue reading

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PETER SAINSBURY. Sunday environmental round up, 16 June 2019

A strong emphasis on economic, ethical and equity issues associated with climate change this week. Global warming has increased inequalities between rich and poor nations; tackling climate change and reducing inequalities must occur simultaneously but only rich and powerful nations … Continue reading

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PETER SAINSBURY. Sunday environmental round up, 9 June 2019

The fossil fuel industries don’t survive by chance or benign government neglect. Two recent reports expose the massive subsidies the industries receive from governments globally, including in Australia, and the multiple very close and enduring links between high-ranking personnel in … Continue reading

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KATE FINLAYSON and TIM BUCKLEY. Queensland government about to make poor economic decision on Adani mine.

Following the Labor party’s defeat in May’s general election, the Queensland Labor government seems keen to approve the development of the Adani thermal coal mine as quickly as possible. However, a report released this week by the Institute for Energy … Continue reading

Posted in Economy, Environment and climate, Politics | 6 Comments

PETER SAINSBURY. Sunday environmental round up, 2 June 2019

Where is the drive that is urgently needed to transition to a zero carbon, environmentally sustainable world going to come from? A European group thinks Community-Led Initiatives can provide a kick-start. Climate change is affecting animals and plants, and the … Continue reading

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TIM BUCKLEY. The Global Energy Transformation is Well Underway

Improved technology and economies of scale are driving rapidly falling costs of renewable energy. As a result financial institutions and energy corporates are fleeing coal and coal facilities are becoming stranded assets. Government policies in China and India and other … Continue reading

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PETER SAINSBURY. Sunday environmental round up, 26 May 2019

Some pieces this week relevant to the causes of Labor’s problems last Saturday. Was their environmental message wrong? – not according to a recent report suggesting sea level rise of up to two metres by 2100, or the forced migrations … Continue reading

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PETER SAINSBURY. The election confirms my environmental pessimism

Saturday’s election result suggests four questions to me: What does the result tell us about democracy in Australia? I mean no implied criticism of any individual or group or of any part of our democratic process. It is a genuine … Continue reading

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