It’s official. The water quality in Gladstone Harbour is fine despite one of the world’s biggest dredging programs. Sick fish are getting better, there are no health problems and the three week fishing ban over 500 sqkm of waterways has just been lifted.
Apparently more than 20 fishermen who presented with serious infections and skin lesions after coming into contact with what they claimed to be infected fish and contaminated water are mistaken.
Queensland Seafood Association president and cardio-surgeon Dr Michael Gardner doesn’t think so but swimming in the harbour has also been officially sanctioned by State Government authorities and all the kids who had to pack their fishing rods away during the school holidays can dust them off and get back out in the harbour while the dredging continues as part of a program to move 46 million cubic metres of silt.
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The carbon tax debate has completely missed the point when it comes to looking after our environment and our health. It’s time to broaden the debate and realise that a healthy planet means much more than just the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.
Does it really matter if the earth remains a nice balmy temperature if the fish I eat are full of mercury, the air I breathe is full of particulate pollution and my fruit and veg are laced with organophosphates?
A new law is set to be passed in Bolivia - it’s called the ‘Law of Mother Earth’ (la Ley de Derechos de la Madre Tierra). Once enshrined it will grant nature the same rights and protections as human beings; it refers to natural resources as ‘blessings’. Sounds pretty out there, doesn’t it?
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Thankfully a carbon tax is designed to hit big bad polluters and not working families.
I mean, take environmental progressive Bob. Bob’s a model citizen and busy man trying to save the world from the hundreds of big bad carbon polluters required by law to report their environmental vandalism to the government.
He starts by using his mobile phone as an alarm clock in his Canberra bedroom. (Telstra: emissions of 1.43 million tonnes CO2 in 2009-10). It’s cold this morning, so Bob’s gotta have an environmentally considerate 4 minute shower to get clean and warm for the trip up the hill (ACTEW Corporation: 219,000t CO2).
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Anyone in Beijing could not have missed the sticky blanket of smog that clung to the city early Wednesday, when air quality was regarded as “hazardous” for several hours.
At 6am I stood on the balcony of my apartment and could not see further than about 1km in the distance. The buildings that were visible appeared through a smoky haze and the air felt warm and thick on my skin.
In my ears was the constant hum of construction that hasbeen the soundtrack to my first Chinese summer.
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