Friday, January 17, 2014

ABC Kimberley Mining and Fracking Forum

ABC Kimberley Mining and Fracking Forum
  • Join Kimberley Mornings for a special mining and fracking forum at the ABC studios in Broome.

    Learn more about the practice of fracking, and the future of mining in the Canning Basin.

    A panel discussion will take place between 11am and 12pm, and you're invited to join the audience or ask a question.

    The panel:

    - Dr Peter Stone from the CSIRO

    - Dr Phil Gorey, Executive Director of the environment division with the Department of Mines and Petroleum

    - Martin Pritchard, Director of Environs Kimberley

    - Damian Ogburn, Chief Scientist for Buru Energy + John Ford, General Manager of Community Affairs with Buru

    - Dr Anne Poelina representing Nyikina peoples

    Please come prepared on the day with your question to panel members, or submit yours prior to Wednesday by e-mailing abckimberley@abc.net.au.

    The discussion will be hosted by Kimberley Mornings presenter Vanessa Mills.

    We look forward to seeing you in the back garden of our Broome studios. Access to the event is off Haas St.

19 comments:

  1. F*CK ME - WHAT A SET UP !

    .


    Stone is a CSG - remember we are confusing SHALE with CSG - industry apologist/minimiser of risk etc.

    http://northcoastvoices.blogspot.com.au/2012/04/coal-seam-gas-in-australia-is-csiro.html

    Wednesday, 4 April 2012





    Coal Seam Gas in Australia: Is the CSIRO helping the mining industry 'manage' the debate?








    If it the issue wasn’t so serious for the NSW North Coast it would have been amusing to see this in The Daily Examiner state on 28 March 2012:



    We asked the Australian Science Media Centre if it could provide us with information not coloured by vested interests and it provided us with a briefing by Gas Industry Social and Environmental Research Alliance director Dr Peter Stone, University of Newcastle coal geologist and sedimentary petrologist Dr Judy Bailey and CSIRO petroleum and geothermal portfolio director Dr Edson Nakagawa.



    Not coloured by vested interests is a big claim to make considering that the CSIRO is no longer the dependable, disinterested source it used to be given the number of commercial relationships it has developed over the years.


    The CSIRO itself is very open about its wealth creation aims:




    So let us start with the Gas Industry Social and Environmental Research Alliance.


    This is ABC Rural on 13 July 2011:


    A commonwealth scientific body and a coal seam gas company have today announced a $14 million dollar joint research venture.

    The Gas Industry Social and Environmental Research Alliance or GISERA is between the CSIRO and Australia Pacific LNG.

    CSIRO's deputy chief of Ecosystem Sciences Dr Peter Stone says it'll draw scientific contributions from all across the country.

    He says he hopes more of the industry's companies will come on board.


    Australia Pacific LNG is a coal seam gas producer and GISERA appears to act as a R&D agent for the oil and gas industry, which may eventually lead to a widespread public perception that it is riddled with conflicts of interest.


    Where does Dr Peter Stone fit into this scenario?


    Dr. Stone has a background in crop and food research and an interest in land management. One has to hope that he has no vested interest in relation to mining. However, at best he appears ambivilant.

    This article High risk demands stronger regulation of mining projects in The Australian on 26 November 2011 does not reassure as it begins:

    WHEN CSIRO scientist Peter Stone briefed federal MPs and staff on coal-seam gas earlier this month, those in the room with some understanding of the likely effects were taken aback by his low-risk characterisation of the mammoth CSG projects that involved 40,000 production wells in southeast Queensland.

    ReplyDelete
  2. http://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/nationalinterest/new-body-to-assess-impact-of-coal-seam-gas/2924330

    New body to assess impact of coal seam gas


    Download audio

    Friday 15 July 2011 6:15PM

    There is growing alarm in Queensland and other parts of Australia at the expansion of coal seam gas mining.

    Farmers are worried about the loss of prime agricultural land, or the pollution of underground water. The industry has even prompted a backlash from residents in parts of suburban Sydney where coal seam gas has been found.

    Amidst all the anxiety, a new organisation aims to inject some scientific reason into the debate.

    Australia's peak science body, the CSIRO, has teamed up with energy company Australian Pacific LNG to form GISERA, that's the Gas Industry Social and Environmental Research Alliance.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Would have been a good idea to have someone who is an expert on aquifers/springs/groundwater who has no conflict of interest with the oil and gas fracking industry - especially after the Water Corps submission to the enquiry re fracking near drinking water sources.


    ............



    Dr Phil Gorey, Executive Director of the environment division with the Department of Mines and Petroleum

    "About the Reforming Environmental Regulation Advisory Panel


    The objective of the Reforming Environmental Regulation Advisory Panel is to implement within the Department a best practice:
    •environmental regulatory framework for the Western Australian mineral and energy resources sector; and
    •business model that ensures efficient service delivery strategies."



    ....................



    Ogburn, Damian



    Brief Biography


    Dr. Damian Ogburn has been Chief Scientist of Buru Energy Ltd since September 5, 2012. Dr. Ogburn is an experienced environmental practitioner with 35 years in senior government and private sector including the oil and gas industry.



    .................



    Jonathan Robert (Jon) Ford (born 11 August 1958) is an Australian politician. He has been a Labor member of the Western Australian Legislative Council since 2001, representing the Mining and Pastoral region.

    Ford was a minister in the governments of Geoff Gallop and Alan Carpenter. In March 2005, Ford became the Minister for Fisheries and the Minister for Kimberley, Pilbara and Gascoyne. He took on a third portfolio when he became Minister for Local Government and Regional Development in February 2006, later the Minister for Regional Development from December 2006. Finally a fourth portfolio was added to his responsibilities when he became Minister for Employment Protection in February 2008. Ford ceased to be a minister after the Carpenter government was defeated at the 2008 state election.



    ...........................



    Ford was part of one of the most corrupt governments in history the Gallop/Carpenter government.

    They screwed everybody over for Burke/Grills and their mate Forrest.


    ReplyDelete
  4. Now he's dead the victims can speak freely without "dark and sinister forces" threatening their lives and the lives of their loved ones.

    Just as the death of Jimmy Saville allowed the victims to speak freely - so will this.

    Saville was a regular guest of Thatcher at Xmas time for many years while he facilitated access to disadvantaged children in government run homes for highly connected paedophiles.

    The people who took advantage of these services from Saville where highly connected figures from politics and the Royal Familly and all well known to McAlpine.

    Among them were well connected members of the yachting community including ex PM of the UK Edward Heath.

    ...



    British political figure, Broome tourism pioneer and property developer Alistair McAlpine dies

    .....................The family of the former aide to former British prime minister Margaret Thatcher said he passed away in Italy on Friday aged 71.

    British prime minister David Cameron led tributes to Lord McAlpine, who, as a key fundraiser, helped secure Thatcher's three election triumphs that made her Britain's longest-serving leader in the 20th century.

    "My thoughts are with Lord McAlpine's family - he was a dedicated supporter of Margaret Thatcher and the Conservative party," Mr Cameron said on Twitter.

    Lord McAlpine is also remembered by West Australians as a property developer who helped turned Broome into a world-famous tourist destination by building luxurious hotels, including Cable Beach Club.

    In 2012, Lord McAlpine returned to the north-west town - a place he first visited to escape the heat of Perth back in the late 1970s - after a decade away and told the ABC Broome still felt like home.

    "Strangely it does, it's very familiar territory for me. I've spent a lot of time here," he said.


    ...


    I don't believe a dead person qualifies for a "Super Injunction".

    ..


    http://www.zenithchambers.co.uk/site/zenith_news/newsdetail/sex_leaks_and_super_injunctions.html

    ......................Lord Walker reminded the audience of around 100 delegates at BPP Law School of just how quickly the law on the invasion of personal privacy has developed in recent years. In his view, the court should not act as “censor of taste” and judges were more frequently being asked to achieve the correct balance between freedom of speech and the individual’s right to respect for his private life - even if their private life involved conduct such as adultery, which many people regard as deplorable.


    After guiding the audience through the decisions of a number of high profile cases on the topic, he concluded, “There is less equality in our society now than 10 or 20 years ago. The super- injunction, a remedy available only to the super rich, may be seen as a small symbol of this growing inequality.”

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. He was in Broome to be honoured as Freeman of the Municipality of Broome.

      Last year, Broome businesspeople paid to have the entrepreneur's likeness immortalised in a bronze statue. They said the $36,000 sculpture was a fitting gesture to the man who put Broome on the map.

      Delete
  5. http://brightgreenscotland.org/index.php/2011/04/superinjunctions-one-law-for-the-rich/

    ....................What super injunctions certainly do however is create a climate where the rich and powerful can use their wealth to bully others into silence and where others are afraid to talk. And that opens the door to a dark world, the like of which we see in dictatorships through history, where the surest form of control is to create such fear that people will censor themselves. But, in this interconnected age, super injunctions do not hold internationally. A blogger in the Phillipines need have nothing to fear from the High Court in London, nor a paper in Peoria, a printer in Padua or a Pretoria TV presenter. The only people who can be gagged by this are the citizens of the nation for which Magna Carta was framed, a nation whose one time leader, the Duke of Wellington, when confronted with this sort of petty scandal, declared ‘publish and be damned.’ Free speech is being moved offshore; outsourced. What has become of us? For these reasons, if for no others, we should resist super injunctions in every way that we are able.



    ...........................................



    http://www.totalpolitics.com/print/157397/the-nefarious-nature-of-the-super-injunction-culture.thtml

    ..........................Super and hyper injunctions are nefarious – once granted they not only protect the identity of the individuals involved, but they may stop discussion or publication of the circumstances of the issue, or stop people contacting people in positions of authority.

    Whilst that has the effect of stopping us knowing which celebrity or footballer is having an affair and the tabloids publishing any gossip about it – it can also quite easily be used to gag the press about legitimate issues of public concern, say a company dumping toxic waste, or where it is speculated that illness resulted from re-coated water tanks.

    Those are not hypothetical scenarios. The former refers to the busted super injunction Trafigura took out to gag the Guardian reporting that it had dumped toxic waste in the Ivory Coast.

    The second, a hyper injunction, refers to a case Mr Hemming raised in the Commons in March. The whole transcript is worth a read.

    An, as yet unnamed, company, took out a hyper injunction against an individual preventing them talking to; in order; the US coastguard, any other coastguard, MPs, journalists, lawyers, any operator of ships or any other third party the fact that a number of ships had had water tanks re-coated and that there was speculation that this had led to illness with a man named as ‘H’ collapsing.

    The ‘defendant’ in this case sought legal advice, and was given a two week suspended sentence for breaking the injunction. We now live in a society where Judges are banning people talking to their elected representatives, seeking legal advice and thus criminalising those seeking justice.

    This is the nefarious nature of our super injunction culture.

    It can cost up to £25,000 to contest a super injunction, spare change for a rich celebrity or a large corporation but an amount that would bankrupt an ordinary person who found out something of supreme public interest but was then slapped with an injunction. Legal Aid is not available.

    .

    ReplyDelete
  6. BBC staff turned 'blind eye' to Savile abuse

    Date January 19, 2014 - 2:40PM

    London: BBC staff turned a blind eye to the sexual abuse by star presenter Jimmy Savile of up to 1000 girls and boys in the corporation's changing rooms and studios.

    An internal inquiry by former judge Janet Smith found Savile's behaviour had been recognised by executives at the world's biggest public broadcaster, but they took no action to stop him, according to London's Observer newspaper on Sunday.

    A police investigation concluded last year that the television and radio presenter, who died in 2011 aged 84, was a predatory sex offender who abused children as young as eight over more than 50 years.

    It identified 450 victims, but the Smith inquiry suggests up to 1000 people were abused by Savile while he was working for the BBC, the Observer reported.


    Peter Saunders, chief executive of the UK's National Association for People Abused in Childhood, which has been consulted by Ms Smith's inquiry, said many people at the BBC admitted knowing about Savile's behaviour.

    "The other thing I have found extraordinary, and very sad, is the number of people I have spoken to connected to the BBC - and that is a lot of people - who said: 'Oh yes, we all knew about him'," Mr Saunders told the newspaper.

    The Smith inquiry report is likely to throw the publicly-funded BBC into fresh turmoil when it is presented next month.

    The Savile revelations sparked a crisis at the corporation over how he was able to carry out such attacks and about the BBC's failure to report the claims against him when they were first raised in the weeks after his death.

    Director-general George Entwistle resigned following the scandal and was replaced by Tony Hall.

    Savile was one of the biggest TV stars in Britain in the 1970s and '80s, and used his fame as a presenter of the BBC chart show Top of the Pops and children's program Jim'll Fix It to rape and assault his victims.

    But the BBC is not the only organisation with questions to answer. The UK health ministry is currently investigating alleged abuse of patients at state-run hospitals, while a police report last year found that officers had failed to follow up evidence against Savile dating back as far as 1964.

    The publicity over Savile prompted a number of women to complain of abuse by other television stars from the same era, a number of whom are now facing criminal charges.


    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/world/bbc-staff-turned-blind-eye-to-savile-abuse-20140119-hv92m.html#ixzz2qoW9ZUca


    ReplyDelete
  7. it's very nice....... interesting.....
    thankyou for giving it...
    England/UK offshore printing services

    ReplyDelete
  8. What's wrong with this picture?

    .

    Richest 85 boast same wealth as half the world

    ...............the world's ultra-wealthy have not only recovered from the global financial crisis, they have positively blossomed.

    The report shows the wealth of the 1 per cent richest people in the world is worth about $US110 trillion, 65 times the total wealth of the bottom half of the world's population.

    It also shows the world's richest 85 people control about $US1.7 trillion in wealth, equivalent to the bottom half of the world's population.

    And far from hindering the wealthy, the political response to the global financial crisis - including the actions of central banks and the austerity measures introduced by national governments - has made the rich fabulously richer.


    .....


    Tony Abbott's audit commissioner accused of conflict of interest over pay TV advocacy

    ..............Tony Shepherd revealed to a Senate inquiry last week that he and a fellow audit commissioner had met the management of SBS. The government-owned broadcaster is one of the businesses under the Commission of Audit's microscope for privatisation

    ..............The audit may also recommend ways to trim funding to the ABC

    ..............questions have been raised over whether he should have had any contact with SBS - which requested the meeting - when he continues to advocate for pay TV providers in his position as chairman of the Australian Subscription Television and Radio Association. The group, whose members include Telstra, Foxtel and ESPN, on Monday issued an invitation to a party at Parliament House, Canberra, next month.

    ''Tony Shepherd AO, chairman, Astra, invites you to join the leaders and stars of Australian subscription television to celebrate the quality, creativity and diversity of content watched by seven million Australians,'' it says.

    The event falls between when the audit's interim and final reports................


    .....


    Social Services Minister Kevin Andrews signals overhaul of welfare system

    ................Mr Shorten said if Mr Abbott was serious about reducing welfare he should ''get rid of the multimillionaire's welfare''.

    ''Get rid of this gold-plated paid parental scheme,'' Mr Shorten said.

    ...............Over the past few weeks, Mr Andrews has used announcements in The Australian newspaper to warn the public of his plans to crack down on welfare payments.

    In Tuesday's report, Mr Andrews flagged the idea of preventing welfare recipients from refusing to take a job on the grounds that it was more than an 90 minutes travel from their home.


    .....


    Future Submarine project a farce that has missed a mention

    ................as the government prepares its first budget and has set up the National Commission of Audit to prepare the way, one of the biggest, most dysfunctional, most wasteful and most misguided proposed programs has not even been mentioned. You could say it remains submerged.

    Not a word has there been about this gold-plated, $30 billion sinkhole.


    .....


    F-35 fighter secrets stolen

    .................Lockheed Martin - the company building the fighter and promising to the deliver the first Australian aircraft later this year - also declined to comment, other than to note it was co-operating fully with the investigation. Australia has committed to buying 14 of the US-built jets at a cost of $3.2 billion - with a further 58 under consideration - although the development is being plagued by delays, cost overruns and design faults.

    China has several times been accused of hacking computers containing sensitive features of the plane.

    Had the blueprints fallen into Iranian hands they almost certainly would have found their way to Russia and China - a potential fatal compromise as these countries manufacture the only aircraft the F-35A is likely to face in battle.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Future Submarine project a farce that has missed a mention




    The strange thing is, as the government prepares its first budget and has set up the National Commission of Audit to prepare the way, one of the biggest, most dysfunctional, most wasteful and most misguided proposed programs has not even been mentioned. You could say it remains submerged.

    Not a word has there been about this gold-plated, $30 billion sinkhole. The only sign that the Abbott government is preparing to confront this impending, unaffordable, inexcusable financial black hole was its announcement that former federal MP Sophie Mirabella was joining the board of ASC Pty Ltd, formerly known as the Australian Submarine Corporation.

    ASC is a basket case. Its fingerprints are all over a sequence of expensive failures. It cannot be reformed, does not deserve to be saved and should be killed off before it can do any further damage to national security.


    And yet the Royal Australian Navy expects that ASC will be the prime contractor of the most costly project in Australian defence history, the Future Submarine project, which it envisages will involve the construction of a dozen submarines, in South Australia, to replace the Collins-class submarines, also made in Australia and also a financial and operational sinkhole.

    That this plan is even being put forward as a matter of policy by the defence bureaucracy shows how deeply ingrained is the cultural delusion and arrogance of the Australian armed forces.

    The cycle of money-soaking arrogance runs like this: there is no hardware suitable for local conditions so the Defence Materiel Organisation must design tender specifications that are specialised for Australian needs. The local military-industrial complex will produce custom-modified, low-volume, high-cost military hardware that is the best in the world.

    The reality, in a cycle repeated over decades, is the military-industrial complex produces gold-plated, high-maintenance products that never match hype and cost twice as much as they need to.

    .

    Both organisations are impervious to competence. In 2011, the Labor government commissioned an audit of the navy's procurement process. It revealed a shambolic labyrinth that produced cost blow-outs and chronic delays. That same year, the navy received an SOS after cyclone Yasi smashed Queensland but was unable to deploy a single ship. All three of its large amphibious ships were out of service and two of them were so unseaworthy they never returned to service.

    At the same time, the navy also had to scrap six large landing craft before they were even used, at a cost of $40 million, because they could not be loaded onto the motherships they had been bought for.

    The opposition defence spokesman at the time, David Johnston, described all this as ''an absolute walking, living, breathing example of incompetence''. He is now Defence Minister, responsible for this fleet of foolishness.

    The minister needs to be aware the military is as duplicitous as it is deluded. ...In 2009, a report entitled Strategic Review of Naval Engineering delivered a scathing assessment of the navy's ability to keep ships in operation. That report was suppressed. It was kept from the then defence minister.

    .

    The new submarines will have a unit cost that dwarfs the Collins-class subs if built here, or roughly three times the cost of acquiring the submarines from foreign shipyards. The navy disputes this disparity but history does not.

    .

    One only need to look at the navy's existing major procurement project, the Air Warfare Destroyer Program, to see costs blowing out and unforseen complexities. Every year produces another procurement embarrassment. This year, it is the fleet supply ship HMAS Sirius, commissioned in 2006. It will be taken out of service after just eight years because it cannot function adequately in rough seas.

    Australia's defence establishment remains culturally fixated on big hardware

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Engineer accused of stealing F-35 fighter secrets for Iran

      ........................Lockheed Martin - the company building the fighter and promising to the deliver the first Australian aircraft later this year - also declined to comment, other than to note it was co-operating fully with the investigation. Australia has committed to buying 14 of the US-built jets at a cost of $3.2 billion - with a further 58 under consideration - although the development is being plagued by delays, cost overruns and design faults.

      China has several times been accused of hacking computers containing sensitive features of the plane.

      Had the blueprints fallen into Iranian hands they almost certainly would have found their way to Russia and China - a potential fatal compromise as these countries manufacture the only aircraft the F-35A is likely to face in battle.

      Mr Khazaee's job on the Joint Strike Fighter project was to test the strength and durability for the turbine engine - along with that of another highly secretive fighter, the F-22 Raptor.

      A sealed affidavit by US Homeland Security officials, used to obtain an arrest warrant for him, has now been released by court order and gives a fascinating insight to his apparent plans to ship the documents to Iran - and how the scheme came unstuck.

      But the affidavit claims not to outline all the facts known in the case - only enough to lay charges - and does not allege Mr Khazaee was working under direction of Iran's government, but visited the country five times in the past seven years.

      It is also not clear whether he or others may have scanned electronic copies of the documents before the shipment was intercepted. According to the affidavit, in November Mr Khazaee sent the boxes by truck from Connecticut on the US east coast to California.

      His mistake appears to have been marking the shipment as destined for Iran - rather than a transit country - and it was selected for inspection by customs officials.

      While the container was marked ''House Hold Goods'', inspectors discovered the trove of sensitive reports described as ''voluminous documents and other material containing technical data''.

      Mr Khazaee had left his Connecticut home but was discovered by surveillance agents at a former residence in Indianapolis. The documents in his shipment had been marked with export restrictions and other classifications as the property of at least three defence contractors and it is unclear how they were smuggled out of the supposedly secure worksite.

      Investigators found Mr Khazaee's name written in red ink on at least one document, and estimated the value of one technical report at more than $350,000.

      He is alleged to have told the freight company he was shipping the boxes to his brother-in-law to hold for his return to Iran. If convicted, he faces at least 10 years in prison.

      Delete
  10. What's wrong with this picture?

    .

    Call to tear up treaties with tax havens

    ...........some observers say the recommendations will go nowhere without a willingness from countries - particularly the US - to implement the new rules, and called on countries such as Australia to consider abolishing its treaty arrangements with Ireland and other low-tax jurisdictions.

    Ireland's low corporate tax rate has been widely abused by companies, including Google and Apple, which have sought to shift profits through the tiny nation to lower their tax bills.

    Australia has been among the victims of such strategies, with Google's Australian arm paying just $74,000 in tax in 2011 despite generating billions in sales revenue.


    .....


    Offshore secrets revealed: the shadowy side of a booming industry

    A worldwide research effort in collaboration with BBC Panorama and the ICIJ reveals the people behind these anonymous companies

    The existence of an extraordinary global network of sham company directors, most of them British, can be revealed.

    The UK government claims such abuses were stamped out long ago, but a worldwide joint investigation by the Guardian, the BBC's Panorama and the Washington-based International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) has uncovered a booming offshore industry that leaves the way open for both tax avoidance and the concealment of assets.

    More than 21,500 companies have been identified using this group of 28 so-called nominee directors. The nominees play a key role in keeping secret hundreds of thousands of commercial transactions.

    .....


    The 'Sark Lark' Britons scattered around the world

    From the Caribbean to Cyprus, former Channel islanders are taking money to disguise the ownership of thousands of companies

    Many Britons who make a living from "the signing", as they call it, originate from the tiny Channel island of Sark............

    They make up teams of sham company directors, according to documents the Guardian has seen, taking money to disguise the real ownership of thousands of international companies. This is not illegal, and they generally say they are helping owners preserve legitimate privacy.

    .............The DTI quoted Mr Justice Blackburne, pronouncing at Manchester crown court: "The message must go out that the office of director is one which carries responsibilities ... The court would not tolerate the situation where someone takes on the directorship of so many companies and then totally abrogates responsibility. If tolerated, it would undermine the whole basis of corporate management."

    But the investigation shows that Sark's "nominees" simply moved elsewhere, and were never policed by the DTI or its successors, including the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills.

    .....


    100 of UK's richest people concealing billions in offshore tax havens

    Global investigation gets under way as HM Revenue and Customs acts on leaked data

    More than 100 of Britain's richest people have been caught hiding billions of pounds in secretive offshore havens, sparking an unprecedented global tax evasion investigation.

    .....


    Richest 85 boast same wealth as half the world

    .....


    China's princelings storing riches in Caribbean offshore haven

    Relatives of political leaders including China's current president and former premier named in trove of leaked documents from the British Virgin Islands

    ReplyDelete
  11. Noaa: 2013 tied for fourth-warmest year on record


    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration releases annual report putting average global temperature at 58.12F

    Last year was tied for the fourth-warmest year on record around the world.

    The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration on Tuesday released its global temperature figures for 2013. The average world temperature was 58.12F (14.52C) tying with 2003 for the fourth-warmest since 1880.

    Nasa, which calculates records in a different manner, said Tuesday that 2013 was the seventh-warmest on record, with an average temperature of 58.3F (14.6C).

    Both agencies said nine of the 10th warmest years on record have happened in the 21st century. The hottest year was 2010.

    A global insurance firm says there were 41 billion-dollar weather disasters last year. Unlike 2012, most of the heat and disasters were outside the United States.


    ................................



    China pollution wafting in large quantities across Pacific to the US: report

    A US study has found pollution from China is travelling in large quantities across the Pacific Ocean to the United States.

    The US National Academy of Sciences report has attributed a significant fraction of the Chinese emissions to the manufacture of goods for export.

    "We've outsourced our manufacturing and much of our pollution, but some of it is blowing back across the Pacific to haunt us," co-author Steve Davis, a scientist at University of California Irvine, said.

    On some days, acid rain-inducing sulphate from the burning of fossil fuels in China can account for as much as 24 per cent of sulphate pollution in the western United States, according to a team of Chinese and American researchers in the report.

    Cities like Los Angeles have received at least an extra day of smog a year from nitrogen oxide and carbon monoxide from China's export-dependent factories, the report said.

    The report shows pollutants such as black carbon, which contributes to climate change and is linked to cancer, emphysema and heart and lung diseases, travelled huge distances on global winds known as "westerlies".

    Between 17 and 36 per cent of various air pollutants in China in 2006 were related to the production of goods for export, according to the report, and a fifth of that specifically tied to US-China trade.

    One third of China's greenhouse gases is now from export-based industries, according to environmental research group Worldwatch Institute.

    China's neighbours, such as Japan and South Korea, have regularly suffered noxious clouds from China in the last couple of decades as environmental regulations have been sacrificed for economic and industrial growth.

    Trans-boundary pollution has for several years been an issue in international climate change negotiations, where China has argued that developed nations should take responsibility for a share of China's greenhouse gas emissions because they originate from production of goods demanded by the West.

    The report said its findings showed that trade issues must play a role in global talks to cut pollution.

    "Polluting industries in China and other emerging economies supply a large proportion of global consumption through international trade," it said.

    "International cooperation to reduce transboundary transport of air pollution must confront the question of who is responsible for emissions in one country during production of goods to support consumption in another."

    The report said technological improvements could help reduce emissions in China.

    "Production-based Chinese emissions could be reduced...if China were to enhance energy efficiency and deploy emission control technologies as effective as those used in the United States," it said.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Police accused of brutality as fracking protester is left 'battered and bruised'



    Sean O'Donnell, who is known as Kris, shot a video of himself being apparently shoved to the ground by police at the Barton Moss protest camp in Irlam, Salford.


    He claims he got a black eye, cuts to his cheek and forehead, a broken metatarsal and suspected broken ribs after being shoved "face first" into the Tarmac on Barton Lane.


    ......................



    Are you opposed to fracking? Then you might just be a terrorist

    From North America to Europe, the 'national security' apparatus is being bought off by Big Oil to rout peaceful activism

    Over the last year, a mass of shocking evidence has emerged on the close ties between Western government spy agencies and giant energy companies, and their mutual interests in criminalising anti-fracking activists.

    Activists tarred with the same brush

    In late 2013, official documents obtained under freedom of information showed that Canada's domestic spy agency, the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS), had ramped up its surveillance of activists opposed to the Northern Gateway pipeline project on 'national security' grounds. The CSIS also routinely passed information about such groups to the project's corporate architect, Calgary-based energy company, Enbridge.

    The Northern Gateway is an $8 billion project to transport oil from the Alberta tar sands to the British Columbia coast, where it can be shipped to global markets. According to the documents a Canadian federal agency, the National Energy Board, worked with CSIS and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police to coordinate with Enbridge, TransCanada, and other energy corporations in gathering intelligence on anti-fracking activists - despite senior police privately admitting they "could not detect a direct or specific criminal threat."

    Now it has emerged that former cabinet minister Chuck Strahl - the man appointed by Canadian prime minister Stephen Harper to head up the CSIS' civilian oversight panel, the Security Intelligence Review Committee (SIRC) - has been lobbying for Enbridge since 2011.

    But that's not all. According to CBC News, only one member of Strahl's spy watchdog committee "has no ties to either the current government or the oil industry." For instance, SIRC member Denis Losier sits on the board of directors of Enbridge-subsidiary, Enbridge NB, while Yves Fortier, is a former board member of TransCanada, the company behind the proposed Keystone XL pipeline.

    Counter-insurgency in the homeland

    Investigative journalist Steve Horn reports that TransCanada has also worked closely with American law-enforcement and intelligence agencies in attempting to criminalise US citizens opposed to the pipeline. Files obtained under freedom of information last summer showed that in training documents for the FBI and US Department of Homeland Security (DHS), TransCanada suggested that non-violent Keystone XL protestors could be deterred using criminal and anti-terror statutes:


    "... the language in some of the documents is so vague that it could also ensnare journalists, researchers and academics, as well."

    According to the Earth Island Journal, official documents show that TransCanada "has established close ties with state and federal law enforcement agencies along the proposed pipeline route." But TransCanada is only one example of "the revolving door between state law enforcement agencies and the private sector, especially in areas where fracking and pipeline construction have become big business."

    This has had a tangible impact. In March last year, US law enforcement officials had infiltrated and spied on environmentalists attending a tar sands resistance camp in Oklahoma, leading to the successful pre-emptive disruption of their protest action.

    http://www.theguardian.com/environment/earth-insight/2014/jan/21/fracking-activism-protest-terrorist-oil-corporate-spies

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  13. Two Western Australian police guilty over 2008 tasering of Aboriginal man


    Aaron Grant Strahan and Troy Gregory Tomlin found guilty of assault, after commissioner refused to stand them down

    Two Western Australian policemen have been found guilty of assaulting an Aboriginal man by repeatedly tasering him in a lock-up.

    Aaron Grant Strahan and Troy Gregory Tomlin have been on trial in Perth magistrates court for six days, jointly accused of common assault over the tasering of Kevin Spratt in the East Perth watch house in September 2008.

    CCTV footage showed the senior constables tasering Spratt nine times in just over a minute after he refused to be strip-searched.

    Defence lawyer Karen Vernon argued the policemen used justifiable force as Spratt had became uncontrollable, causing the officers to fear for their safety as he proved extremely difficult to restrain.

    But state prosecutor James MacTaggart said Spratt posed no threat to anyone, rejecting the suggestion the policemen acted in self-defence, saying their response was not reasonable.

    Magistrate Richard Bromfield ruled on Tuesday that Tomlin was guilty of all three charges he faced, while Strahan was guilty of three charges and not guilty on a fourth.


    ...............................



    Drone wars: US army looks to replace soldiers with robots

    London: The US army is considering replacing thousands of soldiers with robots as it adjusts to sweeping troop cuts.

    A senior American general has said he is considering reducing the size of the army's brigade combat teams by a quarter and replacing some of the lost troops with robots and remote-controlled vehicles. Ideas under discussion include proposals for manned lorries and transporters to be replaced by supply trains of robot vehicles.

    Generals are studying proposals as the US army is to slim down from 540,000 to about 490,000 soldiers by the end of next year. Some reports suggest it could dip below 450,000 by the end of the decade.

    General Robert Cone, head of the army's training and doctrine command, is considering cutting standard brigade combat teams from about 4000 soldiers to 3000, according to Defence News, a US military magazine. He told a seminar: "I've got clear guidance to think about what if you could robotically perform some of the tasks in terms of manoeuvrability, in terms of the future of the force."

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    Options under discussion, he said, included trains of robot vehicles that would follow vehicles with human drivers in long supply convoys.

    He said the army should also follow the lead of the navy in using technology to cut manpower. "When you see the success, frankly, that the navy has had in terms of lowering the numbers of people on ships, are there functions in the brigade that we could automate - robots or manned/unmanned teaming - and lower the number of people that are involved, given the fact that people are our major cost?"


    .............................



    "I need your clothes your boots and your motorcycle................"


    .....

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  14. Oil and gas stocks play high-stakes game
    The West Australian

    Peter Klinger The West Australian

    January 20, 2014, 6:35 am


    ..........................New Standard Energy managing director Phil Thick is also acutely aware of the diversity challenge, having spent the past month marketing a transformational deal to his shareholders.

    Best known as "the other" Canning Basin explorer behind first mover Buru Energy, New Standard is close to finalising a multi-layered deal that will hand it oil production in Texas' Eagle Ford region and mid-term development potential in South Australia's Cooper Basin. New Standard shareholders meet in Subiaco this morning to approve the deal, which will also trigger a restructure of the company's investor base. US shale expert Magnum Hunter Resources Corp and former Nexus Energy chairman Michael Fowler's latest vehicle will become big shareholders.

    Votes lodged by proxy are thought to run strongly in favour.

    Since the deal was announced on December 10, Mr Thick has been at pains to explain that the rationale does not undermine New Standard's long-term expectation to be producing hydrocarbons out of the Canning, east of Broome.

    Rather, he argues, the deal addresses the reality that a small company with limited cash cannot hang all its hopes on a long-term play like the Canning. In addition to a costly drilling campaign to confirm hydrocarbon riches, the time it will take to develop assets in the Canning will be lengthy.

    It is also a factor weighing on Buru shareholders' mind as the brainchild of former Arc Energy boss Eric Streitberg prepares for a transformational 2014 and a big exploration spend to start testing some of the company's unconventional targets in the Canning.

    Unlike New Standard, however, Buru already has its near-term development asset - Ungani, a big conventional oil discovery in the Canning which should be producing 5000 barrels a day by the end of this year and provide cash flow towards Buru's shale exploration.

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