Carmichael coal mine

ADANI-LITE IS GO

Indian mining company Adani has announced it will self-finance a scaled-back version of the Carmichael coal mine and rail project, with construction expected to begin “imminently” despite a number of continuing regulatory hurdles.

According to The Sydney Morning Herald, Adani’s new project will cost $2 billion, down from the initial $16.5 billion tag, and production will sit somewhere around 10-28 million tonnes of coal a year, down from initial plans for a 60 million ceiling. However The Guardian reports that construction still depends on Adani clearing management plans for groundwater-dependent ecosystems and the black-throated finch, as well as a royalties agreement with the state government. Both The Australian ($) and the ABC report that even a smaller project will open the floodgates for Australia’s last major untapped coal resource.

MILNE V GUTHRIE: ROUND 2

Former ABC chairman Justin Milne and former managing director Michelle Guthrie have each launched renewed public attacks ahead of today’s Senate inquiry into political interference in the organisation.

The ABC reports that Milne has submitted a largely devastating performance review of Guthrie, detailing a low “integrity” ranking and high score for “autocracy, arrogance, criticism and distance”, while Guthrie has reiterated Milne’s pressure over chief economics correspondent Emma Alberici and alleged the former chair spoke directly and without consultation to triple j staff about the station’s decision to move the Hottest 100 from January 26. Both will appear before today’s hearing.

SCHOOL’S OUT FOR CLIMATE

Thousands of students across Australia will today protest government inaction on climate change. Junkee reports that, despite tut-tutting from the Prime Minister, more than eight thousand students have expressed interest in Sydney and Melbourne’s “School Strike 4 Climate Action” rallies, with events in other capital cities and towns today to follow Hobart’s 1500+ strong rally yesterday and Canberra’s on Wednesday.

The protests comes as the Earth wraps up its four hottest years on record, an “unprecedented” heatwave creates both bushfires and bleaching risks across Queensland, and the World Meteorological Organisation advises we could see temperature increases of 3-to-5 degrees by 2100.

THEY REALLY SAID THAT?

It has been a tough couple of days in CQ with the bushfires. Great news today though with Adani announcing they plan to start work before Christmas! Adani has been a little Aussie battler. So many have written it off but they just keep chugging along!

Matthew Canavan

The Minister for Resources and Northern Australia packs at least three levels of irony into one very popular tweet.

THIS WEEK FROM THE NEW YORK TIMES

Interested in discussing these stories further, from steer puns to geopolitics? We’d love to meet you in our NYT Australia Facebook group.

CRIKEY QUICKIE: THE BEST OF YESTERDAY

Right-wing conspiracy theorists driven mad by Turnbull’s ‘invisible hand’

“The right love a good conspiracy theory. Climate change is a UN hoax. Fluoridation is a communist plot. The international financial system is run by the Rothschilds. Gay transgender cultural Marxists want to indoctrinate our kids. Somewhere there’s always a sinister, shadowy cabal manipulating the course of events, providing both a target to rail at and expose, and — not that conspiracy theorists will ever admit it — the comforting sense that at least someone is in control and life is not a giant rolling lottery in an indifferent universe.”


Was this Labor’s missed opportunity on migrant welfare?

“Though the bill drew fierce condemnation from Labor MPs, the opposition reluctantly agreed to vote in favour after extracting some concessions (other payments such as parental leave pay and family tax benefits will be accessible after one or two years). Greens MPs have slammed Labor’s support for their bill as an indictment of their weak progressive credentials — all the more notable in a week where the government’s majority is particularly threadbare. So, why did they do it?”


Defamation damages claims skyrocket following Rebel Wilson verdict

Wilson won her defamation case against magazine publisher Bauer Media in 2017 and was awarded record damages of $4.5 million. But despite the Court of Appeal lowering that payout, plaintiffs taking defamation action have enthusiastically embraced the option of including special or aggravated damages since Wilson’s case was first decided.”

READ ALL ABOUT IT

Trump’s ex-lawyer Cohen pleads guilty to lying about Russia contacts

Australia will be ‘friend and partner’ to US: Morrison

‘What do you have to do not to get a bonus?’: Banks face super fund slap over executive pay

Respite for sick asylum seekers with crossbench bill

Queensland bushfire emergency continues with two homes lost but whole towns saved

Growing support for gender equality but some say women ‘exaggerate’

Major criminal convictions in doubt over conduct of informer X

Australia’s Defence department was badly exposed to China’s hackers

Australian jailed by UAE on spying charges appeals to Scott Morrison for help

Ukrainian leader calls on NATO to send warships after clash with Russia

THE COMMENTARIAT

Australia has much to lose if G20 is allowed to falter and fail ($) — Kevin Rudd (Australian Financial Review): “The establishment of the G20 at the Washington Summit 10 years ago was, as Wellington remarked just after defeating Napoleon at Waterloo, a near run thing. It could just as easily have been a radically different result. Indeed, once again it was the French, this time under Sarkozy, who had campaigned hard in late 2008 for a G12 or at most a G14, rather than the wider grouping, and one that would have excluded Australia from the world’s top economic table.”

Plan to fight jihadis online, as well as on the ground ($) — Andrew Hastie (Daily Telegraph): “The Bill does not allow our security agencies to decrypt the messages of innocent Australians, nor does it allow the building of backdoors into encrypted communications. It isn’t interested in harvesting mass data on Australian citizens, as some have falsely claimed.”

Green is the new black: how renewables and storage will replace coal — Dr Lachlan Blackhall (The Age): “Another favourite buzzword of this debate, ‘dispatchable generation’, simply means that you can obtain energy exactly when you need it. Conveniently, energy and battery storage is perfectly capable of responding nearly instantaneously to deliver energy on-demand to support both energy reliability and energy security.”

HOLD THE FRONT PAGE

The Latest Headlines

WHAT’S ON TODAY

Canberra

  • A Senate inquiry will hold another hearing into allegations of political interference in the ABC.

  • Australian War Memorial curator Craig Blanch and historian Dr Aaron Pegram will launch their book For valour, dedicated to the 100 Australians awarded the Victoria Cross, with AWM director Dr Brendan Nelson.

  • Danish ambassador Tom Nørring will present “Urban transformation through technology: Building sustainable cities with effective transport” with the ANU Climate Change Institute and ANU Energy Change Institute.

Melbourne

  • Today is the final hearing day for the last planned round of the banking royal commission. APRA chair Wayne Byres will finish giving evidence prior to closing statements.

  • A snap “Nazis not welcome” rally will be held outside the Department of Home Affairs against Tommy Robinson and Proud Boys founder Gavin McInnes touring Australia. Speakers include Greens Senator Mehreen Faruqi, union organiser William Wong, and Rainbow Labor’s Luke Creasey.

  • Multicultural Arts Victoria will launch Mapping Melbourne 2018, a festival celebrating Asian Australian artwork to run until December.

  • Former Victorian Premier Ted Baillieu will speak on Asialink Business panel event “Australia – India: Deeper Understanding, Stronger Partnership” with Australia India Business Council National Chair Jim Varghese amongst others.

Sydney

  • Foreign Minister Marise Payne will make an address at the Lowy Institute.

  • A Senate inquiry into the practice of dowry and the incidence of dowry abuse in Australia will hold a second hearing, with Senator Louise Pratt to hold a doorstop with Julian Hill MP and Director of JK Diversity Consultants Jatinder Kaur.

  • A public memorial service will be held for “Father of the Independents” Ted Mack at Luna Park.

Adelaide

  • Up to 300 people are expected to take part in an annual asbestos victims memorial service, planting approximately 250 crosses to mark each death due to exposure to asbestos fibres.

  • The Edinburgh RAAF will mark the 50th anniversary of surveillance aircraft the P-3 Orions and the 75th anniversary of the Aircraft Research and Development Unit.

Brisbane

  • The Duke of York Prince Andrew will hold a [email protected] Australia event, to determine the successful Australian entrepreneurs for the London event in December.

Australia

  • Students across the country will protest outside Parliament Houses or local MPs offices as part of the School Strike for Climate Action.

Buenos Aires, Argentina

  • Prime Minister Scott Morrison will attend the G20 leaders summit, to run until December 1.