STATES TO ENDORSE CLEAN ENERGY TARGET
State Labor governments are expected to informally endorse a Clean Energy Target to meet international climate carbon reduction targets tomorrow, according to the Australian Financial Review. The Council of Australian Governments energy council will meet in Brisbane tomorrow. Queensland Energy Minister Mark Bailey told the Fin that the federal government deferring a decision on the CET recommended in the Finkel review had left industry lacking certainty for future investment. Speaking about the meeting to Guardian Australia, Victorian Climate and Energy Minister Lily D’Ambrosio said states could go it alone on a target if the federal government couldn’t determine its position.
New analysis of Australia’s electricity market shows prices rises are due to high gas costs, not high renewable energy costs, according to a report from the Australian National University due to be released at the Australia Institute today. The report, obtained by Fairfax Media, found that the decision to allow much of the eastern Australian gas resources to be exported had been costly to consumers, and that there was no relationship between the use of renewable energy and high electricity prices.
BIG TOBACCO’S E-CIGARETTE CAMPAIGN
Big tobacco has been running an under-the-radar campaign to lobby a federal parliamentary inquiry into the use of e-cigarettes. The Sydney Morning Herald reports that tobacco giant Philip Morris has been using its offshoot smokers’ rights lobby group to encourage smokers and vapers to send in submissions to the inquiry, with a template they should use. The Herald reports that 107 of the inquiry’s 108 submissions so far are pro-vaping, and most follow a similar template.
MAROONS WIN ORIGIN DECIDER
Queensland won the State of Origin decider match last night 22-6 — its 11th series win in 12 years. Brisbane’s Suncorp stadium had a record crowd of 52,540 for the match last night, which NSW had been tipped to win. The Courier-Mail breathlessly reports the win by saying “a new dynasty is born” with a front-page splash, while Sydney’s Daily Telegraph has relegated all match coverage to the sport section.
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WHAT’S ON TODAY
Sydney: Former charity boss Eman Sharobeem will again give evidence to an ICAC inquiry investigating allegations she defrauded immigrant charities she worked for.
Sydney: International friendly soccer match between Sydney FC and Arsenal FC
Top candidate Jim Molan could well be Liberals’ coalmine canary — Niki Savva (The Australian $): “Senior Liberals say that not only is Abbott determined to destroy Turnbull, he wants to bring him down before his second anniversary as Prime Minister on September 15 so he does not serve a day longer as Prime Minister than Abbott did.”
Josh Frydenberg‘s tricky balancing act in cutting emissions from cars — Jennifer Hewett (Australian Financial Review $): “Government research shows there are only 18 vehicles currently available in the Australian market that would meet the new standard of 105 grams, all of them higher cost models with an average price tag of $120,000. None of the 20 top-selling vehicles would meet it.”
It not the wind, it’s the gas. Why power prices are going berserk — Peter Martin (Sydney Morning Herald): “The electricity price has moved up and down in tandem with the gas price, almost exactly.”
Why blackfellas need a voice in Parliament — Sean Gordon (Herald Sun $): “Our people want an independent First Peoples voice outside Parliament, outside the machine of party politics, because our people and communities want to take responsibility for our own problems. We want a fairer more equitable relationship with government.”
No joy for cricketers on slippery pitch — David Peever (The Australian $): “I have no recollection of discussing either industrial relations or cricket with Combet and can only conclude he has some old axe to grind on unrelated matters.”
TODAY IN TRUMP
Donald Trump has defended his son Donald Jr, describing him as “open, transparent and innocent”. Trump Jr appeared on Fox News last night to confront allegations he colluded with Russian efforts to discredit Hillary Clinton. Across town, Trump’s pick for FBI chief Christopher Wray went before a Senate hearing and contradicted the president, saying he did not believe the FBI’s Russia-Trump probe was a “witch-hunt”.
Brazil’s incredible political soap opera has taken another twist, with former leftist president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva convicted on corruption charges. Lula was expected to make a bid for the presidency next year after his handpicked successor Dilma Rousseff was ousted by the nation’s congress over corruption allegations. Rousseff’s backers saw the ousting as a soft coup, and Michel Temer, the conservative who replaced her, has now also been charged with corruption. If Lula’s conviction is upheld, it is unclear who will take on Temer next year. — The Guardian
An iceberg weighing one million metric tonnes has broken off the Antarctic peninsula. The enormous dislocation will not impact sea levels as the ice was already part of a floating sea shelf. There is no scientific consensus on whether such an event can be linked to climate change. — The New York Times
A small number of refugees have returned to Syria from Lebanon, as part of a local deal reached between Hezbollah and a Sunni rebel group. Lebanon hosts as many as 1.5 million refugees but the UNHCR says it does not support returning refugees until the situation in Syria becomes safer. — Reuters
WHAT WE’RE READING
American tech companies are so afraid of offending Indians that they’re censoring all their products (BuzzFeed): “In the world’s largest democracy, Amazon Prime Video cuts most nudity and profanity from its content, Google bans retailers from buying ads for erotica, Amazon and Flipkart refuse to sell adult products, and Tinder positions itself as a brand that parents approve of.”
So that’s why Sarah Huckabee Sanders wants the cameras off (Washington Post): “There is, for one, the matter of her boss constantly proclaiming things that range from the inexplicable to the patently wrong. There’s also the metastasizing Russia scandal … but above all is a more simple explanation: Sanders has no earthly idea what’s going on in the White House she purports to represent.”
What if somebody opens a door during flight? (Ask The Pilot): “It seems that a week can’t go by without hearing the latest story about a passenger who went cuckoo and tried to yank open an emergency exit, only to be tackled and restrained by those around him, who thought they were on the verge of being ejected into the troposphere. While the news never fails to report these events, it seldom mentions the most important fact: You cannot – repeat, cannot – open the doors or emergency hatches of an airplane in flight.”
How Ageing Research Is Changing Our Lives (Nautilus): “Every decade over the last hundred years, lifespan has increased by two years. That’s amazing because we’ve gone from an average life expectancy in the 1900s, which was around 47, to 77 today. That’s an incredible achievement, but this extended lifespan is not all rosy. We also have an epidemic of what we call the chronic disease of ageing.”
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