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Tony Abbott agrees windfarms may have 'potential health impacts' | Environment Tony Abbott finds windfarms visually awful and agrees they may have “potential health impacts”, and says the deal on the renewable energy target was designed to reduce their numbers as much as the current Senate would allow. Speaking to the Sydney radio host Alan Jones – a long-term windfarm critic – the prime minister said: “I do take your point about the potential health impact of these things … when I’ve been up close to these windfarms not only are they visually awful but they make a lot of noise. “What we did recently in the Senate was to reduce, Alan, capital R-E-D-U-C-E, the number of these things that we are going to get in the future … I frankly would have likely to have reduced the number a lot more but we got the best deal we could out of the Senate and if we hadn’t had a deal, Alan, we would have been stuck with even more of these things … The opposition leader, Bill Shorten, said the comments would create investor uncertainty. “There’s Tony Abbott at it again,” he said.
Liberal senator wants windfarm inquiry to recognise 'adverse health effects' | Australia news A new federal inquiry could call for commonwealth oversight of windfarm regulations and demand recognition of the alleged health impacts of turbines on people living near them, according to Coalition senators. The prime minister, Tony Abbott, dismayed the wind industry on Thursday when he told Sydney radio announcer Alan Jones that he wished the government had been able to reduce the number of new windfarms more than was possible in a recent renewable energy deal with Labor, and agreed windfarms had “potential health impacts”. The government had previously claimed it was demanding a reduction in the renewable energy target because the industry would be unable to meet it. West Australian Liberal backbencher Chris Back, who sits on the new senate select inquiry into windfarms, said it was looking at “what role the federal Clean Energy Regulator [CER] should have in checking that wind farms are compliant with state laws and guidelines.”
Greek government-debt crisis Long-term interest rates (secondary market yields of government bonds with maturities of close to ten years) of all eurozone countries except Estonia. Higher yields indicates that financial markets have serious doubts about credit-worthiness of the state. Greece's debt percentage since 1977, compared to the average of the Eurozone Overview 2010–2014 In April 2010, adding to news of the recorded adverse deficit and debt data for 2008 and 2009, the national account data revealed that the Greek economy had also been hit by three distinct recessions (Q3-Q4 2007, Q2-2008 until Q1-2009, and a third starting in Q3-2009), which equaled an outlook for a further rise in the debt-to-GDP ratio from 109% in 2008 to 146% in 2010. 2015 Financial position summary Key statistics are summarized below, with a detailed table at the bottom of the article. Greek GDP fell from €242 billion in 2008 to €179 billion in 2014, a 26% decline overall. Causes Overview 
Exxon knew of climate change in 1981, email says – but it funded deniers for 27 more years | Environment ExxonMobil, the world’s biggest oil company, knew as early as 1981 of climate change – seven years before it became a public issue, according to a newly discovered email from one of the firm’s own scientists. Despite this the firm spent millions over the next 27 years to promote climate denial. The email from Exxon’s in-house climate expert provides evidence the company was aware of the connection between fossil fuels and climate change, and the potential for carbon-cutting regulations that could hurt its bottom line, over a generation ago – factoring that knowledge into its decision about an enormous gas field in south-east Asia. The field, off the coast of Indonesia, would have been the single largest source of global warming pollution at the time. “Exxon first got interested in climate change in 1981 because it was seeking to develop the Natuna gas field off Indonesia,” Lenny Bernstein, a 30-year industry veteran and Exxon’s former in-house climate expert, wrote in the email.
Coalition bans government's clean energy bank from financing wind power | Australia news The federal government has ordered the Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC) not to make any future investments in wind power, instead focussing on “emerging technologies”, trade minister Andrew Robb has confirmed. Fairfax media reported on Sunday that the treasurer, Joe Hockey, and the finance minister, Mathias Cormann, bypassed the environment minister, Greg Hunt, in issuing the CEFC with the directive. Robb told Sky News on Sunday that that was “a total beat-up”. “Greg was fully cognisant of what was decided,” he said. “He was perhaps the principle party, along with [resources minister] Ian Macfarlane, who put together this arrangement with the crossbenchers, and he is fully cognisant of it, drove this deal and settled this deal, understood this arrangement. Hunt took to Twitter on Sunday to refute the claims made in Fairfax, labelling them “factually wrong and misleading”. The sector has reacted to the funding news by expressing disappointment. “Tony Abbott never looks forward.
Full text | The health impacts of globalisation: a conceptual framework Figure 3 shows that the impact of globalisation on each proximal health determinant is mediated by changes in several distal factors (Figure 3; arrows 5–12). The most important relationships will be discussed in more detail below. It is important to note that health policies and health-related policies can have an influence on all proximal factors (Figure 3; arrow 5). Health services Health services are increasingly influenced by globalisation-induced changes in health care policy (Figure 3; arrow 5), economic development and trade (Figure 3: arrow 6), and knowledge (Figure 3; arrow 7), but also by migration (3: arrow 7). Although the WHO aims to assist governments to strengthen health services, government involvement in health care policies has been decreasing and, subsequently, medical institutions are more and more confronted with the neoliberal economic model. The increasing trade in health services can have profound implications for provision of proper health care. Lifestyle Food
The end of capitalism has begun The red flags and marching songs of Syriza during the Greek crisis, plus the expectation that the banks would be nationalised, revived briefly a 20th-century dream: the forced destruction of the market from above. For much of the 20th century this was how the left conceived the first stage of an economy beyond capitalism. The force would be applied by the working class, either at the ballot box or on the barricades. The lever would be the state. The opportunity would come through frequent episodes of economic collapse. Instead over the past 25 years it has been the left’s project that has collapsed. If you lived through all this, and disliked capitalism, it was traumatic. As with the end of feudalism 500 years ago, capitalism’s replacement by postcapitalism will be accelerated by external shocks and shaped by the emergence of a new kind of human being. Postcapitalism is possible because of three major changes information technology has brought about in the past 25 years.
The Australian dollar is 'smashed' and teetering over the US 70c precipice | Business The Australian dollar has been in freefall. “Smashed” was the description from a foreign exchange trader friend noting that since the peak of US$1.1080 during 2011, the dollar is now below US 75c and many strategists are now forecasting a fall below US70c and with a real risk of US60c over the next year. The Australian dollar’s fall of more than US 35c from its recent peak is substantial and reflects a buildup of negative news concerning the economy. Recently, I noted the escalation in Australia’s net foreign debt as one factor that is risking international investor confidence. Of the many other factors that tend to drive the level of the Australian dollar, almost all have been negative and are suggesting that, in the near term, there are still substantial downside risks. Commodity prices have fallen sharply, many dropping to their lowest level in a decade. Another negative influence, which is likely to persist for some time, is the record low level for Australian interest rates.
Bjørn Lomborg consensus centre could be set up at Flinders University | Australia news The federal government has held talks with Flinders University over the possibility of establishing a research centre headed by controversial academic Bjørn Lomborg. Flinders University said it had asked the department of education for information about Lomborg’s consensus centre but insisted it had not made a firm decision over whether it wanted to host the academic’s work. The federal education minister, Christopher Pyne, has vowed to find another university to take on Lomborg’s centre after the University of Western Australia decided in May to hand back $4m in federal government funding for it. The UWA opted to take the funding for the centre, only to reverse course following a backlash from its academics. Pyne said the university had shouted down Lomborg, with the Danish academic complaining that the issue had become a political football. Lomborg’s venture would be linked to his Copenhagen consensus centre, with a focus on aid spending and international development.
Tuvalu climate refugees granted residency in New Zealand A family from Tuvalu have been granted residency in New Zealand on humanitarian grounds. Creative Commons: Stefan Lins, 2000 A family from Tuvalu has been granted New Zealand residency after claiming they would be affected by climate change and rising sea levels if they returned home. It is the first successful application for residency on humanitarian grounds where climate change has been a factor. Sigeo Alesana and his family moved to New Zealand from Tuvalu in 2007, but has had no legal status in the country since 2009. The family’s case was originally dismissed by the tribunal in March but was successfully appealed on humanitarian grounds because of their strong family and community links to New Zealand. Mr Alesana already has six sisters and an elderly mother to care for in the country. The tribunal is also said to have acted over concerns about climate change, and particularly the vulnerability of the couple’s children to illnesses as a result of poor water quality. About the Author