Wednesday, December 11, 2013


Four current articles below

Hoagy is at it again

After his own research showed that corals recover rapidly from damage, Hoagy went quiet for a couple of years -- but it looks like he is back at his old stand now.  And even his fellow Warmists are  predicting a temp rise of less than 4 degrees.  And guess where corals thrive best  -- in the warmest waters!  Hoagy is a crook!

RISING sea temperatures might sound nice for us wanting to go for a warmer dip, but it could kill off the Great Barrier Reef by the end of the century, a scientist claims in a new book.

The coral would have to move 4000km southward over 100 years to survive scientists' worst-case scenario of a 4C degree rise in sea temperatures by 2100, Professor Ove Hoegh-Guldberg says.

In his book, Four Degrees of Global Warming: Australia in a Hot World, the University of Queensland reef specialist says the outlook for the reef is bleak.

"In a four-degree world, the Great Barrier Reef will be great no longer. It would bear little resemblance to the reef we know today," he wrote.

"There is little evidence that marine resources like the Great Barrier Reef possess the resilience to withstand the impacts of a dramatically warming world." Even a more conservative 2C temperature rise estimate would likely be too much for the reef to handle, he wrote.

The death of the almost 2300km-long reef would destroy its $6 billion tourism industry as well as other areas like fishing. The book looks at how Australia will adapt to a warmer and drier climate in the next 100 years.

Warmer and more acidic seawater is a knock-on effect of increased atmospheric carbon levels.

Prof Hoegh-Guldberg wrote that sea temperatures rose by 0.5C in the 20th century but the effect is expected to speed up this century.

The result is that coral cannot move fast enough to cooler southern seas or genetically adapt fast enough to stay where they are.

"Unless we dramatically reduce carbon dioxide emissions which are acidifying our oceans and leading to their warming, we will face the destruction of the Great Barrier Reef and serious decline in our marine resources," he wrote.


Coastal developments approved in Qld.

Greenies will all be holding their breath at the moment  -- building up to a massive tanty.  Note that Gladstone is South of  the GBR anyway.  There is no reef to speak of offshore from Gladstone

Several massive resource projects have been approved on the Great Barrier Reef coast by the federal government including the dredging and dumping of spoil near the reef and a new coal export terminal.

Environmentalists have hit out at the decision, with the WWF and the Greens saying it further industrialises and threatens the world heritage protected icon. Environmental campaigners Greenpeace, Friends of the Earth and the Australian Marine Conservation Society, dressed as Nemo and turtles, will protest against the approval in Brisbane's CBD on Wednesday.

The projects approved by Environment Minister Greg Hunt late on Tuesday include the dredging of 3 million cubic metres of spoil - which will be dumped in the reef's waters - for the development of three coal export terminals at Abbot Point.

Mr Hunt also approved the building of a new coal terminal at Abbot Point by Indian mining giant Adani.

Approval was also given to a new processing plant for coal seam gas on Curtis Island, which includes 1.4 million cubic metres of dredging at Port Curtis and the mouth of the Calliope River near Gladstone. A pipeline to the plant - being proposed by Arrow Energy - was also approved.

In making the decision Mr Hunt said he had imposed 148 strict environmental conditions on the Abbot Point and Curtis Island developments. They included conditions to ensure the water quality impact from the dumping of dredging spoil was offset.

Mr Hunt said the offsets - which would stop sediments entering the Great Barrier Reef marine park from land sources such as farm runoff - would require an overall gain in water quality.

"It is important to note that each of these sites is already heavily industrialised and that the processes were highly advanced at the change of government," Mr Hunt said.

"The conditions I have put in place for these projects will result in an improvement in water quality and strengthen the Australian government's approach to meeting the challenges confronting the reef."

Water quality is a significant problem for the Great Barrier Reef with increasing pollutants and nutrients resulting in damage to corals, sea grass and other important marine habitats. There is also emerging evidence that poor water quality can encourage populations of a damaging starfish know as crown of thorns that has plagued the reef.

The World Heritage Committee has also been alarmed by increasing development on the reef's coast - with a number of major resource projects approved in recent years - and will consider in 2014 whether it should be placed on an "in danger" list of world heritage sites.

Richard Leck from WWF said Mr Hunt had failed the reef and had turned his back on scientific evidence of the damage dredging would cause.

"Approving a massive amount of sediment to be dumped at a time when the reef's health is so low, it really is against what the science tells us," he said.

Queensland Resources Council chief executive Michael Roche welcomed the decision and said it confirmed that industry could co-exist with the reef.


WA shark policy a 'cull by another name'

The Green/Left never have cared about human life, of course. Six people being attacked warrant no action at all to them.  They prefer sharks to people anyway

Experts and conservationists have bitten back at Western Australia's tough new policies to prevent deadly shark attacks, which include the establishment of licensed offshore "kill zones".

Following the sixth fatal attack off the WA coast in two years last month, the state government announced tougher measures aimed at preventing attacks, but denied it was a cull.

Professional shark hunters will be paid to patrol WA waters, with a licence to kill any shark bigger than three metres spotted in designated zones spanning large parts of the metropolitan and south-west coastline.

And baited hooks will also be placed along the coast to catch sharks, with a larger strike team ready to scramble into action in the event of an attack.

Premier Colin Barnett said he knew the measures were controversial but refused to acknowledge he was sanctioning a cull.

Shark academic Christopher Neff, from Sydney University, disagreed.  "This is a tool that is used to kill sharks and to reduce populations - that is by definition culling," Mr Neff said.   "It is an unfortunate policy."

Two 'Marine Monitored Areas', stretching one kilometre offshore from Quinns to Warnbro in the metropolitan area, and Forest Beach to Cape Naturaliste and Prevelly in the state's south, will be established in coming weeks.

And drum lines - drums with a baited hook fixed to the ocean floor and designed to attract sharks - will be placed one kilometre from the shore of beaches and surf breaks, and will be monitored daily.

Federal environment minister Greg Hunt was consulted about the policies before they were revealed.

But Greens senator Rachel Siewert said she would move a motion in parliament calling on the federal government to maintain protection of the great white shark.

"The WA government's announcement opens the door to sharks being caught and killed. Measures based on the capture and killing of a threatened and protected species is not a responsible step," Ms Siewert said.

Piers Verstegen, director of the Conservation Council of WA, claimed the move could actually increase shark attack risk.

"This new cull policy amounts to indiscriminate fishing, and will not only cull potentially risky sharks, but we can expect to see dolphins, turtles, seals, nurse sharks and a range of other marine life killed off our beaches."

Treasurer Troy Buswell, who gains the fisheries portfolio on Wednesday admitted it was likely other marine animals would be caught with the baited hooks, and it was possible tagged sharks used for research could also be caught by the new policy.

But the government insisted public safety came first.

"This does not represent a culling of sharks. It is not a fear-driven hunt, it is a targeted, localised shark mitigation strategy," Mr Buswell said.

Experts from the University of WA - who are working with the government on research into sharks - have already said a cull would be a pointless reaction, and that a surge in shark-bite incidents off WA's coast are linked to the growing population, which means more people in the water.


Bat removal in Charters Towers in north Queensland goes off with a bang

Hundreds of people lined the streets of Charters Towers in north Queensland yesterday to see 80,000 bats driven from the town.

The sounds of horns, helicopters, gun blasts and even fireworks last night filled the air in Charters Towers to try and scare away a colony of bats that have infested a local park.

The Charters Towers council says it was forced to take the drastic action after other measures did not work.

Local residents were overjoyed to see the animals go.  "They're terrible and the smell pervades everything," one resident said.  "The droppings - everywhere - you can't even park your car here for one day."

Shop manager Ayla Pott says the smell of the animals drive away customers.

"It stinks, it smells - some days it's that unbearable you can't open your doors," she said.

But conservationist Priska Sussli says the removal was inhumane, because some bats were too young to fly away.

"How can people do this, why?" she said.

"It's just very bad timing to do this dispersal."

The council will use the drastic measures every morning and night for the next 10 days and monitor the park to see if the bats come back.


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