Five-day 3G, 4G outage in remote community caused by rodents sparks calls for tailored services. A prolonged phone and internet outage at one of South Australia's most remote Aboriginal communities was likely caused by rodents and has prompted a call for fresh approaches to telecommunications in the bush.
Key points: 3G and 4G services went down on January 15 for five days affecting phone, internet, EFTPOS, and ATM servicesNBN Co is looking to increase the amount of people at Pukatja connected to its Sky Muster satellite serviceInternet advocacy group BIRRR calls for tailored approaches to the rollout of remote services Telstra services went down at Pukatja on January 15 and meant people could not make phone calls nor use EFTPOS and ATM machines. The outage meant people were unable to buy goods and fuel with bank cards and were unable to withdraw cash.
Services were restored on January 20. Pukatja is an Aboriginal community on the APY Lands in far north South Australia, 1,400 kilometres north of Adelaide. "Living here and being remote is already very challenging. Relocating to Queensland? Get in line, Sunshine state builders record four-fold rise in new home enquiries. A building company says the level of inquiry for new homes in south-east Queensland is "phenomenal," with a mass domestic migration apparently underway to the Sunshine State.
Key points: Builders say relocation companies have experienced a 400 per cent increase in demand for quotes from Sydney and Melbourne residentsOne major builder says new home sales are up 80 percent in south east Queensland Access to tradespeople could come under pressure amidst building boom Metricon Queensland general manager Luke Fryer said new homes sales were up 80 per cent and the level of enquiry in local property had been extraordinary.
"The major relocation companies are quoting 400 per cent increases in quotes to people who are wanting pricing to relocate from Sydney and Melbourne up to the Gold Coast and Greater Brisbane," Mr Fryer said. Interstate migration and government stimulus measures have helped boost new homes sales and building approvals across south-east Queensland, he said. Western Harbour Tunnel gets go ahead but locals say NSW Government brushed off their concerns. Residents of Sydney's lower north shore say they are "devastated and disgusted" the green light has been given to the Western Harbour Tunnel, which will be the city's third harbour crossing.
The NSW Government hopes to begin construction in the first quarter of 2021The tunnel aims to take pressure off the Harbour Bridge, Harbour Tunnel, Anzac Bridge and Western DistributorResidents say the construction impacts will be felt by 20,000 school students The NSW Government today announced it had given planning approval to the 6.5 kilometre long tunnel which will have three lanes in each direction. The project is expected to cost the NSW Government $14 billion.
The Stop the Tunnels group, a coalition of local school P&Cs, environment groups and residents groups based on Sydney's lower north shore, said their long-held concerns had been brushed aside. Western Sydney residents furious as approval given to increase height of new towers at Wentworth Point. Western Sydney residents are furious plans to increase the height of a major residential development have been given the green light, despite concerns about overdevelopment and congestion.
The towers have been approved at 15 storeys, despite the original limit of nineOne local said the influx of new residents would overwhelm the local schoolsAnother local said parking and congestion had not been properly considered The concept plan for two 15-storey apartment buildings at Wentworth Point means they will be almost double in height compared to neighbouring buildings, which reach a limit of nine storeys.
Initially, the 23 Bennelong Parkway site was permitted to be nine storeys, but in 2018, Piety Development Pty Ltd sought to increase the height to 35 and 25 storeys. Community backlash forced the developer to scale back its proposal to 15 storeys for each tower. The NSW Department of Planning accepted the plans days before Christmas last year. 'Unlawful' night works see cranky Brisbane residents go months without sleep. A construction company has subjected residents to months of sleepless nights, noisily working well into the early hours of the morning without a permit from the Brisbane City Council.
Key points: Around the clock construction of a school sees residents endure months of interrupted sleep, forcing some to moveNeither the Brisbane City Council nor the State Government have granted the construction company a permit to work overnightBoth branches of government say they are working to find a solution to the noisy works which have been temporarily suspended Broad Construction and other contractors are working day and night to finish the construction of the new Brisbane South State Secondary College in Dutton Park, set to open next week.
In addition to the school itself, the State Government said road upgrades and services to intersections were required to facilitate the school. Andy Stamatiou lives right next to the project and said the noise has been so bad his wife has had to sleep elsewhere. Most of Melbourne's slum pockets were demolished, but a few survived - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation) Updated about 2 hours agoSun 17 Jan 2021, 9:57pm The only reason a photo of Ward's Lane exists is because the street was considered a good example of a terrible place to live.
Social reformer F Oswald Barnett came to take a photo of it in the early 1930s as part of his campaign to rid Melbourne of its slums. Goldfields museum exhibition reveals what you may have in common with doomsday preppers. When faced with the reality of an insidious virus spreading throughout the world and forcing everyone to hide in their homes, people panicked in unusual ways.
Key points: A new exhibition at the Goldfields museum explores the relatable anxieties of doomsday preppersSince COVID-19 hit, prepper Jim Greer says more people have become interested in the subcultureMuseum manager Cara Haymes says the pandemic is changing attitudes towards preppers One of the greatest mysteries of 2020 — the panic buying of toilet paper as pandemic lockdowns loomed — affected many parts of Australia including Kalgoorlie-Boulder. New wastewater rules could force thousands of Australian homes to install bigger, more costly sewage treatment. Australian households that need secondary wastewater treatment systems may have to pay $1,000 more per year in running costs due to new regulations setting a minimum water treatment capacity.
Key points: About 1.4 million Australian homes use secondary wastewater treatment systemsNew rules favour systems that require electrical power and use more water than passive systemsA report commissioned for the passive wastewater industry says many houses will face significant costs The claim was made in a report by economist Dr Cameron Murray, who studied the economic impact of the new standards ahead of their introduction this year.
Nine US officials including Michigan ex-governor charged over Flint water crisis deaths. Nine US officials — including former Michigan governor Rick Snyder and key members of his administration — have been charged following a new investigation into the Flint water disaster that contaminated the US city with lead and left 12 people dead.
Key points: A lengthy criminal investigation ran parallel to civil litigation over the health crisisIt's alleged Flint residents who became sick from the water were failed by 'all levels of government' Officials face a variety of charges including manslaughter, misconduct and perjury The 12 residents of the predominantly African-American community died after city officials implemented a cost-cutting plan in 2014 to switch the water supply to the contaminated Flint River. Authorities say at least 90 cases of Legionnaires' disease are also linked to the plan. Nine former state and local officials pleaded not guilty in Genesee County courts on Thursday to a total of 42 criminal counts. Health officials charged with manslaughter. Coronavirus lockdown coincides with rise in fatbergs in sewers. During the months Western Australia was forced into lockdown by the COVID-19 pandemic, there was a noticeable spike in drain blockages, including more massive "fatbergs" which cost authorities $3.3 million to clear.
Key points: Wastewater drain blockages spiked during COVID-19 stay at home ordersMassive "fatbergs" were pulled from sewers to unclog the networkAuthorities urge people to only flush loo paper, as everything else clogs the system "Fatbergs" accumulate when foreign objects flushed down toilets bind together, and during the months the state was locked down there was a noticeable spike in drain blockages. "Things like wet wipes, nappies, sanitary products, toys, money, even a bedsheet, people's mobile phones, sometimes the odd engagement ring — you know, all those things [that] shouldn't be going down the toilet," the Water Corporation's Clare Lugar said. Five years on and the Federal Government's much-hyped 'city deals' haven't lost lustre despite funding problems and delays - Politics - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation) Posted about 2 hours agoSun 10 Jan 2021, 7:57pm Almost five years into the "city deals" experiment, it is still not clear whether it's worth the effort after the Federal Government missed its first formal review deadline.
Key points: Close to five years since the first "city deal" was announced, there is still no independent assessmentLabor wants to continue with them if they win powerNine commitments have been assessed as falling behind schedule in the latest reporting And new hurdles are emerging, including a $200 million bill to shift a stinky sewage treatment plant metres from a Hobart site earmarked for redevelopment. Papua New Guinea town of outcasts gearing up for David and Goliath battle to save community of Bushwara. Lily Simon can still vividly recall when she was forced to sleep in a tent after being evicted from her home in Port Moresby almost 20 years ago.
Ms Simon had been living in one of the area's many makeshift settlements, where people regularly face eviction, before she was removed by police. "[After that] I slept outside without food, the children didn't go to school," she says. ACCC finds northern Australian insurance costs soaring, recommends industry regulation. Like many northern Australians, Sue Shearer has watched the cost of her home and contents insurance soar with dismay.
Key points: An ACCC inquiry has found more and more people in northern Australia are going without insuranceThe watchdog says average home insurance premiums in the region rose by 178 per cent over a decadeIts report has recommended a series of regulations to make the industry more consumer friendly "It just keeps going up and up. How to save money and electricity when renovating — CSIRO's top tips for your home. What do you do with a 50-year-old red brick home in the tropics of Far North Queensland that is an energy guzzler burdened with a two-star energy efficiency rating? Key points: The highest rating for energy efficiency is 10 in the Nationwide House Energy Rating Scheme (NatHERS)The average Australian house is rated 2.2 stars and rises to 4.9 stars after renovatingRenovating wisely could cut heating and cooling costs by up to 50 per cent Many Australians have been jumping at the chance to renovate their properties during the coronavirus pandemic and the extension of the Home Builder Grants Scheme, with CSIRO building experts saying it was a perfect time to lift home energy ratings.
For Cairns couple Adam Fletcher and Kim Seccafien, it was a case of going back to the future in a retrofit that would not break the bank, but lifted that rating up to around eight stars. In the Nationwide House Energy Rating Scheme (NatHERS), the highest rating is 10. The secret suburban stormwater drains being turned into vibrant public wetlands - ABC News.
If you take a walk around any established Australian neighbourhood, chances are you will come across barbed wire fences marked with signs warning people to KEEP OUT. Key points: Old and tired stormwater drains are being transformed into public parksThey're common in established suburbs, fenced with barbed wireIn dense built-up areas, the drains provide much needed green relief Behind the gates lies a stormwater drain — an essential suburban utility, but often a banal, neglected and sometimes vandalised eyesore. Infrastructure Victoria 30-year strategy offers blueprint for zero-waste, zero-emissions post-COVID future - ABC News. As Victorians begin planning for life beyond COVID-19, Infrastructure Victoria has released a 30-year blueprint for the state's future, with a heavy focus on climate, energy, and sustainability.
Controversial contaminated soil dump proposed for Bacchus Marsh may be blocked - ABC News. Peak hour at Marsden Park is getting worse as the population grows, and there's no end in sight - ABC News. If you hate peak hour — spare a thought for the residents of Marsden Park in north-west Sydney. Mould in newly built Perth home blamed for family's rashes, joint pain and headaches - ABC News. How to tell if moving to the country is a good decision or disaster waiting to happen - ABC News.
The idea of moving to the country has gained momentum through the COVID-19 pandemic. Many workplaces have introduced new policies on working from home that give employees the flexibility needed to make the switch. Lockdowns have shown many just how cramped and uncomfortable life can be when you cannot escape to the usual activities that get you out of the house. And if everything is closed, what is the point of being in the city and paying a higher rent or mortgage anyway? The Reserve Bank has noted rents have gone down and vacancy rates have gone up in major cities.
Controversial Daintree River bridge back on the agenda as Douglas Shire Council surveys community - ABC News. Nearly 40 years ago the Daintree Rainforest was host to one of Australia's most iconic environmental protests as demonstrators attempted to halt the construction of a road through what is now a national park. Victoria's COVID-19 State Budget is a chance to help Melbourne's outer suburbs catch up, experts say - ABC News.
Melbourne Airport Rail Link construction to start 2022, trains to run to CBD every 10 minutes - ABC News. Passengers landing at Melbourne Airport will be able to take trains to the heart of the CBD every 10 minutes once the Melbourne Airport Rail Link is completed in 2029, governments say. How the ABC produced the Mt Resilience Augmented Reality experience to explore a way of living with big weather and climate change - ABC News. At the end of 2019, a town called Paradise in California signed a Green Chico Deal to rebuild their town to be carbon neutral and sustainable after it was completely destroyed by wildfires. At the time, I'd just started researching ideas on how we could extend the themes of extreme weather and preparedness from the TV series Big Weather (and how to survive it) with ABC Impact executive producer Teri Calder.
I was working from the North Coast of NSW while spending time with my family after they'd just recovered from fighting fires on our farm outside of Kempsey. Climate change to inflate insurance costs in flood and bushfire-prone communities - ABC News. Severe weather has rendered parts of Australia uninhabitable, properties will become uninsurable, and people will be priced out of their homes, leading climate scientists warn.
It's time to rethink indoor airflow to reduce the spread of COVID-19, say experts - ABC News. Humpback whales have been spotted in a Kakadu river. So in a fight with a crocodile, who would win? - ABC News. Inside a share house in 2020: Comfort, breakups and fights over COVID tests - ABC News. Adelaide jumps up ranks to be Australia's most liveable city in new Ipsos survey - ABC News. .id the population experts. Bobtail lizards are coming out in warmer weather, and there are things we can do to care for them - ABC News. Australian property bubble hasn't yet burst, but can house prices keep rising amid the pandemic? - ABC News. Severe heatwave could break record temperatures in the Top End - ABC News.
Why the bushfire royal commission's final report is not about apportioning blame - ABC News. Sydney's new $3b NorthConnex tunnel opens with aim to keep 5,000 trucks off Pennant Hills Road - ABC News. Victoria's W Tree inspired American Fred Koch to relocate and live an alternative lifestyle - ABC News. The NT Government says 'coronavirus refugees' are heading to the Territory. Will they fix its shrinking population? - ABC News. Port Hedland covered by dust from iron ore mining, residents resist buyout. Coronavirus didn't kill off the town pedestrian mall, it was already dead - ABC News. Population decline due to coronavirus could cost economy $117b a year, KPMG forecast shows - ABC News. Australia's only 'bubble house' goes on the market in Ipswich - ABC News. Are virtual power plants the future of solar power? - ABC News. Coronavirus has meant a massive boom in telehealth — one Australian start-up was ready - ABC News.
Canberra is known for its high median incomes, but the cost of living in the capital continues to climb. Melbourne's tower lockdowns reveal the precarious future of Victorian public housing - ABC News. From slums to commission towers, Melbourne has lived with a century of housing challenges - ABC News. Queensland house painter sees 50 Shades of Grey in 'Hampton-style' suburban makeover - ABC News. Residents fear proposed waste-to-energy plant could 'decimate' recycling industry - ABC News. How coronavirus could forever change the look and feel of Australia's cities and suburbs. Moving back to the country good for business — if you're in the right one - ABC News. To avoid a return to pre-coronavirus traffic congestion, experts want to talk about change right now.
How coronavirus could forever change the look and feel of Australia's cities and suburbs. Peter spends $170 a fortnight on public transport. The city he lives in might surprise you. Tree loss is making for sweaty suburbs, and the households that can least afford it are feeling the heat. Government rules out recommendation by Productivity Commission to axe remote-area tax concessions. India's cities have the world's worst air quality for 2019, but Bangladesh is worst overall country. Australia's infrastructure 'pipe dream': Can we ever get ahead? Crestwood defies odds to celebrate 50 years as the first 'perfect' Radburn neighbourhood in the world. There's no need to give up on crowded cities — we can make density so much better. Tasmanian Government launched RiskReady fire, flood assessment tool for homeowners in silence.
How Donnybrook, 'the ugliest town in Australia', reinvented itself. Tiny homes are adorable and cool, but how does the reality of living in one compare with the image? Lansdown Industrial Precinct zoning gets go-ahead despite fears for drinking water - ABC Rural - ABC News. Norfolk Island's dead helping residents to hear thanks to one woman's passion for tinkering. Inside the room as the Murray-Darling's top cop Mick Keelty meets irrigators. Millions of dead fish, dry rivers and lakes — so why have Menindee locals decided to stay? As high-rises reach their use-by date, we need to find safe ways to 'unbuild' our cities. Residents and architects reconsider building designs following bushfires.
Bushfire experts say it's time to revisit Black Saturday recommendations and stop people rebuilding in highly dangerous areas. The Amazon's lost tribes are inspiring Colombia's cocaine farmers to become conservationists. Postcode prejudice is rife in Australia — and it affects rich and poor. Sinkhole swallows bus in China, six dead. Climate change is putting us off having babies, but Christmas is a reminder of hope in birth. Victoria's regional general stores face challenges of shrinking populations. Move over monkey bars, 'bush play' is the new way for apartment kids. Day zero approaches for Stanthorpe as locals face prospect of levy to cover cost of trucked-in water. Street artist Kitt Bennett creates massive murals under Australia's feet. King Island, in Bass Strait, generates 50 per cent of its energy from wind and solar power. Queensland's proposed neighbourhood plan would see cul-de-sacs replaced by grid-like blocks.
After Vanity Fair came to town, Byron Bay took a long hard look at itself. Families take extended breaks from city living and turn their kids into 'road scholars' Nightingale inner-city development proposed for Ballarat amid fears of urban sprawl 'social disaster' Floods across subcontinent displace millions in India, Nepal and Bangladesh. Living on the fringe can erode our sense of community. Here's how we fix that. Sydney housing squeeze prompts push for more medium-density development. Jakarta is running out of time to stop itself sinking into the sea. Chennai's the latest city to have almost run out of water, and other cities could follow suit. Canberra apartment residents unable to hear fire alarms through soundproofed front doors.
Life underground at White Cliffs has a style of its own - ABC Rural - ABC News. Jobs boom leads to housing crisis in western NSW city of Griffith. Public toilet design disadvantaging women, elderly and most vulnerable, says author Lezlie Lowe. The Black Knight, the Iron Maiden and a Pacific island forever changed by phosphate mining. How to save water at home during water restrictions and beyond. Not just high house prices: The reasons more young adults live with their parents. Eden Project's grand plans to transform disused Anglesea coal mine into eco-tourism attraction. The city of Hobart is sprawling out when experts say it should be moving skyward.
Fukushima's mothers became radiation experts to protect their children after nuclear meltdown. Frustrated Palm Island mayor calls for help with undrinkable drinking water. Water restrictions loom for Sydney as drought continues to impact on dam levels.