News: Environment, sustainability and climate change

Bringing oyster reefs back from extinction

Ostrea angasi reef

Oyster reefs carpeted thousands of kilometers of Australian coastline 200 years ago, but were dredged to near extinction within a century of colonial settlement. An ambitious nationwide restoration program now seeks to bring them back. In South Australia, the largest reef restoration in the Southern Hemisphere, Windara Reef, was constructed in 2017 to restore the ecosystem of the native mud oyster, Ostrea angasi, off the Yorke Peninsula.

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Bushfire and the challenge to respond to new levels of environmental risk

Bushfire and the challenge to respond to new levels of environmental risk

There have been terrible bushfires this summer across southern Australia – and they are still going. Part of the reason for this disaster is the unprecedented climatic conditions that the country has been facing, including record hot and dry conditions.

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What people’s beef is with gene editing?

Australian cattle

Gene editing in the beef industry could provide significant new strategies for producing far superior livestock. It could be used to produce cattle that are heathier, more environmentally resilient and allow for higher levels of animal welfare by eliminating the need for painful common procedures.

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Buzz off honey industry, our national parks shouldn’t be milked for money

Buzz off honey industry, our national parks shouldn’t be milked for money

Among the vast number of native species damaged by the recent bushfire crisis, we must not forget native pollinators. These animals, mainly insects such as native bees, help sustain ecosystems by pollinating native plants.

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I made bushfire maps from satellite data, and found a glaring gap in Australia’s preparedness

I made bushfire maps from satellite data, and found a glaring gap in Australia’s preparedness

On the night of January 9 2020, my wife and I secured our Kangaroo Island home and anxiously monitored the South Australian Country Fire Service (CFS) website for bushfire advice.

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Australian sea lions are declining. Using drones to check their health can help us understand why

Australian sea lions (Neophoca cinerea) are one of the rarest pinnipeds in the world and they are declining

Australian sea lions are in trouble. Their population has never recovered from the impact of the commercial sealing that occurred mainly in the 19th century.

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We forget the lessons of past disasters at our own peril

We forget the lessons of past disasters at our own peril

In the context of the terrible fires facing the nation, the telling reflection that “Those who do not remember the past are doomed to repeat it” has salience.

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Urban rainwater harvesting in 'smart' south Asian cities

South asian laundry with buckets, harvesting rain water

Urban South Asia needs water—a lot of it, and while most of this water comes from over-extraction of groundwater and interbasin transfers, the future ability to rely on these resources is now in question.

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