July 2019

Problems with the Murray-Darling Basin can’t be skimmed over

by Maryanne Slattery[Originally published in The Canberra Times, 13 July 2019] The Murray-Darling Basin is broken. Literally. As in its parts aren’t joined up anymore – the Darling River/Barka hasn’t flowed into the Murray since 2017. The Murrumbidgee isn’t flowing into the Murray either and will be disconnected from the rest of the basin more

Canberra shows Australia: Progressive policies nationally popular and proven to work

Most Australians want 100% renewable energy, a stamp duty to land tax swap and pill testing at music festivals in their own state, new national polling from The Australia Institute shows. A new report from The Australia Institute, authored by Bill Browne, shows that most of the Australian Capital Territory’s innovative policies have majority support

June 2019

Adani mine approval shows climate change debate reaches new level of lunacy

by Ebony Bennett in The Canberra Times

by Ebony Bennett[Originally published in The Canberra Times, 15 June 2019] Australia’s debate on the climate crisis reached a new level of lunacy this past week. Almost nowhere else in the world is the climate debate so divorced from reality. Firstly, Adani’s groundwater plan was approved by the Queensland government in a rushed process. This

WTF2050 Episode 12 – Frank Cuypers – Destination Think

featuring Anna Bateman and Leanne Minshull

Prof. Frank Cuypers is a marketing and tourism academic brought to the island by Tourism Tasmania to share his thoughts on the future of tourism. He talks about the strength of our clean and green Tasmanian brand and the global hunger for authentic experienced based Tourism. Also in the episode an interview with Charles Munn,

WTF2050 Episode 11 – Louise Morris – Insect Farmer, Rebel Foods, Derby Tasmania

featuring Anna Bateman and Leanne Minshull

Louise’s insects are on the standing menu at MONA Faros restaurant, as featured on many fine menu’s across Tasmania. Her Protein Plus Nut Butter blends stocked at East Coast Village Providore (St Helens) and newly opened Derby Providore. In this episode Anna & Leanne discover organic insect farming from inside a shipping container on a

May 2019

What’s ‘left’ and ‘right’ in Australian politics today? The lines are shifting

by Richard Denniss in The Guardian

by Richard Denniss[Originally Published on Guardian Australia, 29 May 2019] While Australian political debate has never seemed more sharply divided, the philosophical lines between left and right have never seemed more blurred. The economy is always in transition, and people are always losing and finding jobs, but – after decades of the right being contemptuous

Fossil fuel’s win may be Coalition’s loss

by Richard Denniss[Originally published in the Australian Financial Review, 27 May 2019] There’s no doubt the Adani coal mine helped the Liberal National Party win votes in North Queensland but there’s also no doubt it helped them lose a lot of votes – and economic credibility – in Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide. And while the triumphalism of

Bob Hawke leaves behind an important environmental legacy

by Ebony Bennett in The Canberra Times

by Ebony Bennett[Originally published in the Canberra Times, 17 May 2019] Bob Hawke is perhaps credited most often for his economic reforms, but he also leaves a tremendous legacy of protecting Earth’s wilderness. Without Bob Hawke, Antarctica would be a quarry, Tasmania’s iconic Franklin River would be flooded and Queensland’s Daintree rainforest would be a

Key independents back 4 steps to fix Murray Darling

New research from The Australia Institute highlights four steps governments can take to improve the management of the Murray Darling Basin: Emergency water allocation to the dairy industry Develop policies to ensure diversity in Basin agriculture A federal Royal Commission or federal ICAC investigation Pause the Basin Plan The Institute’s proposal has been backed by

April 2019

Debugging Watergate: interpreting official responses

The Australia Institute has today released analysis of official responses to the Watergate scandal surrounding Murray Darling water purchases, covered by The Project, Guardian and other outlets.   The analysis finds that official responses are misleading and in some cases incorrect: The Prime Minister’s claim that the record water purchase was covered in a Senate inquiry

Poll: North/South Divide on Climate Action Exposed as Political Myth

The much-hyped ‘North/South divide’ on climate action is a political misconception, according to new research from The Australia Institute. The research shows that the majority of Australian voters across states and poltical allegiance are concerned by climate change, and want the Government to mobilise on the issue, “like they mobilised everyone during the world wars”. Key

Poor Voter Impression of Murray Darling Basin Management Soars

The Australia Institute surveyed a nationally representative sample of Australians in 2018 and in 2019 about their views towards issues surrounding the health and management of the Murray Darling Basin (MDB). Key Findings: A majority of Australians (55%) now consider the health of the Murray Darling Basin poor or very poor, up 18 percentage points

SA Voters Want Federal Royal Commission into MDB, Restrictions on Irrigators

New research from The Australia Institute shows that South Australians overwhelmingly want a Commonwealth Royal Commission into the Murray Darling Basin Plan (73%) and believe that irrigation businesses in the Darling Basin should not be allowed to draw water when mass fish kills and drinking water shortages are occurring downstream (84%). The research also reveals

March 2019

Majority of Australians want Gov to help farmers to farm sun and wind

The Australia Institute surveyed a nationally representative sample of 1,536 Australians about government support to assist farmers to harvest solar energy and sell it directly to clients. Key Findings: Respondents were asked if they support allowing farmers who generate wind or solar power on their farms to sell it directly to other landholders. ·  Overwhelming

Kingaroy coal proposal uneconomic

New research released today by The Australia Institute finds that a coal project proposed near Kingaroy, Queensland, should be rejected by policy makers on economic grounds. The report finds that the project is unlikely to be economically viable, faces huge barriers in getting coal to market and would adversely impact key local industries. “The Kingaroy

Murray-Darling: United Condemnation of NSW Water Policy

NSW Water Minister Niall Blair has been urged to halt a controversial policy change in an open letter co-ordinated by The Australia Institute and signed by irrigators, graziers, Aboriginal nations, local governments, environment groups and the former Commonwealth Environmental Water Holder. The broad alliance of signatories oppose the Minister’s plan to give away rights to

Coalition’s coal virtue signalling

by Richard Denniss[Originally published in The Australian Financial Review, 5 March 2019] Cultural symbols have replaced price signals at the heart of conservative politics. There’s now no better way for Australian conservatives to virtue signal than to support the construction of new coal mines. The Coalition is no longer neo, nor liberal – it simply

Taxpayer Dollar Boon for Fossil Fuel Exports Under Guise of Overseas Development

The Federal Government is preparing to spend vast amounts of taxpayer funds on fossil fuel project overseas to generate business for increased fossil fuel exports out of Australia, new analysis by The Australia Institute warns. Key Points A new bill to Parliament that would expand funding and powers for Efic, Australia’s export finance agency, turning

February 2019

New oil spill risk plan still shows potential disaster for King Island

A new Environment Plan from international energy company, Equinor, released today, shows that a spill in the Great Australian Bight could totally envelop King Island. The modelling has been released after a leaked document from the same company on the same drilling site in November of last year showed the potential catastrophic impact of an

Coal, conservatives, and craziness

by Richard Denniss[Originally published in the Financial Review, 19 Feb 2019] Millions of people in developing countries jumped straight from having no phone to having a mobile phone and so too will thousands of villages in developing countries jump from having no grid electricity to their own renewable energy. Leapfrogging old technologies can save billions.

Murray-Darling: NSW floodplain strategy “grossly inadequate”

The NSW Government’s strategy to manage irrigators’ use of floodwaters has been slammed in a joint submission by researchers, irrigators, graziers and a Darling River community group. The diverse groups called on the NSW Government to withdraw its draft strategy as it fails to address the problem of massive volumes of water being diverted into

January 2019

Transcript: Response to SA Murray Darling Royal Commission

featuring Rod Campbell and Maryanne Slattery

E&OE TRANSCRIPT – PRESS CONFERENCE 31 January 2019, Parliament House, 2.30PM Rod Campbell, Research Director, The Australia Institute Maryanne Slattery, Senior Water Researcher, The Australia Institute Rod Campbell: Three things are clear from the Royal Commission’s report today. The first is that we need more water in the Murray-Darling Basin. Our rivers need more water.

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