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New marine reserves won’t address UNESCO’s Reef concerns

June 15, 2012 - ...World Heritage Site in Danger in the next year. If the in-Danger listing happens, it would be deeply embarrassing to the Queensland and Commonwealth governments, and the worldwide publicity would be an enormous blow to the Australian tourism industry. The comprehensive report expands on a summary released earlier this month, which has triggered a political storm between the Queensland State and Commonwealth governments. The Great Barrier Reef is slowly declining, an inconvenient truth that is often ignored or denied. In the past 50 years, it has lost half of its coral cover. Many coastal reefs and seagrass meadows have been...

American Cancer Society Trivializes Cancer Risks: Blatant Conflicts of Interest

May 23, 2010 - ...it “holds itself to the highest standards of transparency and public accountability.” Samuel S. Epstein, M.D. is professor emeritus of Environmental and Occupational Medicine at the University of Illinois at Chicago School of Public Health; Chairman of the Cancer Prevention Coalition; The 2005 Albert Schweitzer Golden Grand Medalist for International Contributions to Cancer Prevention; and author of over 270 scientific articles and 20 books on the causes and prevention of cancer, including the groundbreaking The Politics of Cancer (1979), Cancer-Gate: How To Win The Losing Cancer War (2005, Baywood Publishing), and Toxic Beauty (2009, BenBella Books). To read Dr. Epstein’s...

The Tarkine Forest under threat – Again

March 19, 2012 - ...here in Tasmania. That’s normal. I’m confused too! This is a “Land of Confusion” and yes, I love the song, its brilliant to run to, to get the angry hormones going! Good luck if your head is not in a spin at the end- but this is how I see things at the moment: Essentially at the moment there are shonky deals being revealed by the likes of Tasmanian Times online news (tasmaniantimes.com.au) of an ‘independant’ MLC receiving gifts from corrupt families in Borneo; Tasmanian Hydro being involved in dam building causing human rights abuses, deforestation, etc in Sarawak; the...

Coal’s Control of Government

August 11, 2011 - ...safety. In this new mode labour costs were relatively minor; between 1950 and 1966 employment in NSW coal mines decreased by 40% while output doubled. These new levels of efficiency put Australia on a trajectory of ever greater production and exports. Australia is now the fourth largest coal producer in the world behind China, the USA and India. Of the known recoverable resources, Australia has 10.6% of the world’s black coal and 8.9% of world’s brown coal and at current rates of extraction these are expected to last 111 years and 539 years respectively. With over three-quarters of electricity derived...

The Stockholm Memorandum. Tipping the Scales towards Sustainability May 2011

May 23, 2011 - ...values, institutions and policy frameworks. We need to support our ability to innovate, adapt, and learn. 1. Reaching a more equitable world Unequal distribution of the benefits of economic development are at the root of poverty. Despite efforts to address poverty, more than a third of the world’s population still live on less than $2 per day. This needs our immediate attention. Environment and development must go hand in hand. We need to: • Achieve the Millennium Development Goals, in the spirit of the Millennium Declaration, recognising that global sustainability is a precondition of success. • Adopt a global contract...

Supercapitalism and Demise of the Environment; book reviews

July 17, 2008 - ...wealth and protect what citizens valued in common began to disappear. Giant firms that dominated entire industries retreated and labor unions shrank. Regulatory agencies faded. CEOs could no longer be corporate statesmen. And as the intensifying competition among companies spilled over into politics, elected officials became less concerned about the Main Streets and communities in their districts and more concerned about attracting money for their campaigns. Lobbyists swarmed over Washington and other capital cities seeking laws and rules that would give them a competitive advantage (or avoid competitive disadvantage) relative to their rivals, wielding greater and greater influence over decision...

Green China and Young China

August 1, 2007 - ...China’s land mass is affected by acid rain. Over 300 million rural residents have no access to clean drinking water. One-third of urban residents breathe heavily polluted air. Thanks to the traditional model of economic development – which is energy intensive, heavily polluting and relies on high levels of consumption – China has become the world’s largest consumer of water, largest emitter of waste water and one of the three areas in the world worst affected by acid rain. Our current society is unsustainable. In 2003 China crossed a “safe boundary” on the Gini coefficient – a measure of inequality...

DEA joins statement from civil society organisations: Australia must slash climate pollution this decade

August 6, 2021 - ...moving the world closer to the pathway of keeping global heating as close to 1.5 degrees as possible. The science says that the Federal Government needs to triple climate pollution reduction targets to 75% this decade if we are to help keep Australians safe. If we continue with the current plan, then Australia won’t reach net zero climate pollution until the year 2170. Australia has exceptional natural advantages with its abundant renewable energy and skilled workforce. We can develop world-leading new industries and jobs based on our vast reserves of solar and wind energy, but if development plans and investment...

Mary Robinson: Climate change is an issue of human rights

December 13, 2008 - ...have already been violated. As we mark the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, it is worth remembering that climate change violates the declaration’s affirmation that “everyone is entitled to a social and international order in which [their] rights and freedoms…can be realised”. We must now grasp the opportunity to create the kind of international order that the framers of the UDHR dreamed of – even in a radically changed global context they never imagined. Mary Robinson is a former Irish president, former UN High Commissioner for Human Rights and an honorary president of Oxfam International http://www.independent.co.uk/opinion/commentators/mary-robinson-climate-change-is-an-issue-of-human-rights-1059360.html....

Copenhagen Accord

December 30, 2009 - ...Parties. Those mitigation actions in national communications or otherwise communicated to the Secretariat will be added to the list in appendix II. Mitigation actions taken by Non-Annex I Parties will be subject to their domestic measurement, reporting and verification the result of which will be reported through their national communications every two years. Non-Annex I Parties will communicate information on the implementation of their actions through National Communications, with provisions for international consultations and analysis under clearly defined guidelines that will ensure that national sovereignty is respected. Nationally appropriate mitigation actions seeking international support will be recorded in a registry...

Breast Cancer and DDT, implications for malaria treatment

August 9, 2007 - ...who reached puberty before 1945 could not have been exposed to the pesticide during development up to puberty. DDT continues to be used in some African countries to fight malaria. For example, DDT is effective in prevention when used to spray annually inside huts. This use was sanctioned in the UN Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants as a public health exception. In a reversal of 30 years of policy, the World Health Organization endorsed DDT spraying for malaria control. see http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/5350068.stm for more detail and other articles. Within the International Society of Doctors for the Environment Dr. Paul Saoke,...

A review of Cancun—Implications for DEA

January 2, 2011 - ...level work to reduce our consumption and that of our colleagues. There is a crisis of confidence in effective action on climate change fed by incompetent State governments in Australia and internationally by the revelations of Wikileaks which have more than confirmed our worries about the perfidy of international negotiators. Who would have thought the Secretary General of the UN was being spied upon by the Secretary of State? Already there is evidence from Wikileaks of the political chicanery involving the greatest health issue facing the world, climate change. These behaviours can be changed only by community pressure. David Shearman...

A healthy world without inequality

May 3, 2013 - ...than their counterparts in the more equal countries. There are likely to be similar connections between inequality and adverse environmental impacts. Poorer people around the world can’t afford newer technologies, so depend on clearing forests for food and fuel, and using older, more polluting cars. Poorer countries tend to have higher birth rates and lax environmental regulations and safeguards. The poor often carry the blame for environmental impact, but the top end of income range has an infinitely larger environmental footprint per capita. In the US, the richest 1% are estimated to use up to 10,000 times more carbon than...

A Healthy New World Order – Peter Tait

May 12, 2013 - A Healthy New World Order – Peter Tait This is a presentation from the iDEA13 Conference (April 2013) by Peter Tait. Please use the link on the right of the screen to view the presentation....

ABC’s World Today: Heatwave to hit record temperatures across Australia

December 18, 2019 - As Australians this week brace for a nationwide heatwave which could see temperatures approach 50 degrees in some areas, Dr Arnagretta Hunter says that while people have lived with such high temperatures, worsening climate change could test our biological limits over the coming years. Featured guests on the program today were:  Doctor Arnagretta Hunter, cardiologist and ACT Chair for Doctors for the Environment Australia Chad Staples, Western Sydney Zookeeper  Paul Roberts, SA Power Networks Hear the interview on the ABC’s World Today HERE....

Climate Change and the Financial Crisis; a new opportunity for DEA to redouble its effectiveness.

January 8, 2009 - ...famine and water shortage. In the heady rush of what Garnaut termed the ‘platinum age’ of human economic expansion DEA was having a hard time being heard. The economic masters of the turbocharged economies and their media were deaf to what we were trying to say, which was, quite simply: “There is only one world; it is finite; it is precious; global resources have a limit; perpetual unsustainable growth is not possible. In excess of 6 billion tons a year of human-belched carbon dioxide going into the atmosphere every year is already excessively dangerous and yet humanity is intent on...

Desalination and relentless ‘development’ for what? The sorry story of the SA Gulfs

April 10, 2011 - ...in one word, society’s remorseless slide into unsustainability it would be desalination. Web sites The website www.saveourgulfs.org.au will be operational from 25 April 2011. I thank Ruth Trigg for her assistance in preparing this article. Ten reasons to save our precious Gulfs One The extraordinary marine biodiversity of the Gulfs The waters of Gulf St Vincent and Spencer Gulf are teeming with more species than in almost any other part of the world’s oceans. 80% of these species are unique to the Gulfs, whereas 80% of species of the Great Barrier Reef can be located elsewhere. Researchers and photographers visit...

Climate change. How do we lead the Blind?

September 11, 2006 - “The reality is that climate change of the order and time frames predicted by climate scientists poses fundamental questions of human security, survival and the stability of nation states which necessitate judgments about political and strategic risk as well as economic cost.” This an introductory statement from a collaborative paper “Heating up the Planet; Climate Change and Security” from the Lowy Institute for International Policy written by Alan Dupont, Senior Fellow for International Security at the Institute and Graeme Pearman, former Chief of Atmospheric Research at the CSIRO. There are several reasons for framing a report in this way. Firstly...