From The Guardian, 13 February 2021: La Niña has been good to the backyards and farmlands of much of eastern Australia. Cooler, wetter conditions have led to a flourishing of lush grass, trees and – unfortunately – weeds. With so many more people working from home, the joy of gazing out of the home office … Continue reading Unstoppable eating machines: why Australian farmers are renting out goats for weed control
From The Guardian, 20 August 2020: In a secret location in an industrial area in western Sydney, a test strip of asphalt is being laid. But this is no ordinary road. The 50-metre strip stretching out into the hot afternoon sun is held together by an unusual material. The gooey cellulose that binds a road … Continue reading Closing the loop: This man turns discarded coffee cups into roads
From The Guardian, 6 August 2020: Laurie Brosnan is frustrated. “We pay a tax to produce clean energy,” says the pig farmer from Biloela in central Queensland. In the past five years, his company, Bettafield Piggery, has invested millions of dollars in an advanced biogas system that not only meets all its own electricity needs, … Continue reading “We pay a tax to produce clean energy”
From Wired UK, 21 April 2020: Everything was chaos, but at least he wasn’t being hunted by a lion. Chad Staples comforted himself with that thought as he crammed pandas, marmosets and tamarins into his kitchen until his counters overflowed with animals. Outside his home, giraffes, rhinoceroses, zebras and ostriches fended for themselves in flaming … Continue reading The day Australia burned
I chat with Susanne Courtney and BBC5 Live ‘Up All Night’ listeners about the effect of Australia’s devastating bushfire season. Listen here.
Is Australia’s fire the world’s future, asks NPR Philadelphia? Listen here.
From MIT Technology Review, 17 January 2020: The first bushfire alert that Eleanor Limprecht got was a text message she received on the morning of New Year’s Eve. She was staying with her family for Christmas, holed up in Narrawallee on the south coast of New South Wales—a popular holiday destination. When the warning came … Continue reading Australia had plans to prevent fire blackouts. They just weren’t ready in time.
From USA Today, 14 January 2010: We have evacuated from our house in the Blue Mountains, west of Sydney, twice already in Australia’s bushfire season, and it’s not even halfway through summer. After the second time, just a few weeks ago in December, we returned to a scorched block of land. The fire came so … Continue reading I wasn’t prepared for bushfires this menacing. Even now, Australia doesn’t have a plan.
From The Scientist, 10 January 2020: Unprecedented Australian wildfires have extracted a heavy toll from the continent’s unique wildlife, with an estimated 1 billion animals killed, 10.7 million hectares (approximately 41,300 square miles) burned on the east coast, and more than 150 fires still burning in two states alone, according to news reports and the … Continue reading Scientists take stock of Australian wildlife devastated by fires
From The Atlantic, 8 January 2020: Facing a future of fire, drought, and rising oceans, Australians will have to weigh the choice between getting out early or staying to fight. Read more.