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Saturday, 15 September

12:43

Seymour Line Notification: Service update - Seymour line "seymour IndyWatch Emergency Feed"

18:02 Southern Cross - Albury is delayed by approximately 16 minutes due to speed restrictions on the ARTC network. [20:43 15/09]

05:02

Seymour Line Notification: Service update - Seymour line "seymour IndyWatch Emergency Feed"

17:32 SCS to Seymour and 20:25 Seymour to SCS will not run tonight and have been replaced by coaches [13:02 15/09]

00:08

Methane and climate: 10 things you should know "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

The graph above shows methane concentrations in Earths atmosphere over the past 10,000+ years: 8000 BCE to 2018 CE.  The units are parts per billion (ppb).  The year 1800 is marked with a circle.

Note the ominous spike.  As a result of increasing human-caused emissions, atmospheric methane levels today are two-and-a-half times higher than in 1800.  After thousands of years of relatively stable concentrations, we have driven the trendline to near-vertical.

Here are 10 things you should know about methane and the climate:

1. Methane (CH4) is one of the three main greenhouse gases, along with carbon dioxide (CO2) and nitrous oxide (N2O).

2. Methane is responsible for roughly 20% of warming, while carbon dioxide is responsible for roughly 70%, and nitrous oxide the remaining 10%.

3. Methane is a powerful greenhouse gas (GHG).  Pound for pound, it is 28 times more effective at trapping heat than is carbon dioxide (when compared over a 100-year time horizon, and 84 times as effective at trapping heat when compared over 20 years).  Though humans emit more carbon dioxide than methane, each tonne of the latter traps more heat.

4. Fossil-fuel production is the largest single source.  Natural gas is largely made up of methane (about 90%).  When energy companies drill wells, frac wells, and pump natural gas through vast distribution networks some of that methane escapes.  (In the US alone, there are...

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Friday, 14 September

23:30

Efficiency, the Jevons Paradox, and the limits to economic growth "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Ive discovered a new blog which very much aligns with this one. In his own about section, Darrin Qualman describes himself as a long-term thinker, a civilizational critic, a researcher and data analyst, and an avid observer of the big picture.

I recommend anyone following this blog to check him out, his blog is full of interesting graphs

Ive been thinking about efficiency.  Efficiency talk is everywhere.  Car buyers can purchase ever more fuel-efficient cars.  LED lightbulbs achieve unprecedented efficiencies in turning electricity into visible light.  Solar panels are more efficient each year.  Farmers are urged toward fertilizer-use efficiency.  And our Energy Star appliances are the most efficient ever, as are the furnaces and air conditioners in many homes.

The implication of all this talk and technology is that efficiency can play a large role in solving our environmental problems.  Citizens are encouraged to adopt a positive, uncritical, and unsophisticated view of efficiency: well just make things more efficient and that will enable us to reduce resource use, waste, and emissions, to solve our problems, and to pave the way for green growth and sustainable development.

But theres something wrong with this efficiency solution: its not working.  The current environmental multi-crisis (depletion, extinction, climate destabilization, ocean acidification, plastics pollution, etc.) is not occurring as a result of some failure to achieve large efficiency gains.  The opposite.  It is occurring after a century of stupendou...

09:13

Serena cartoon fuels debate about racist Australia "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Australia is by most measures one of the worlds most successful multicultural societies, but a controversial cartoon of Serena Williams has rekindled accusations it is also inveterately racist.

Australia should be a poster-child for diversity: One-in-two Australians has a parent born abroad. The economy has been growing for 27 straight years. Crime is barely a worry. Melbourne and Sydney dominate rankings of the best places in the world to live.

Visit any medium-size human habitation on the mind-bendingly large continent and its obvious that Australia is the proverbial melting pot Kiwis, Chinese, Irish, Filipinos, Brits, Vietnamese, Italians, Indians, Greeks and Lebanese at every turn.

AFP | Photo illustration shows the front page of the Herald Sun newspaper, featuring a cartoon of US tennis player Serena Williams (lower R)

But this racial, ethnic and linguistic diversity contrasts sharply with a lingering image of Australia as an angry white country stuck in the past.

It was an impression underscored by foreign outrage about an Australian cartoonists depiction of a fat-lipped and masculine Serena Williams, and the collective shrug it prompted Down Under.

After the drawing was published, a CNN opinion piece described Australia as the nicest racist country you will ever see and the New York Times thundered that Australia has never fully confronted its own history of racism.

Image may contain: 1 person

Many Australians admit there is a problem.

The legacy of European settlers terrorising Aboriginal communities looms large, and inequality between the two groups remains staggering.

Racial epithets are still tossed around in a way that makes visitors jaws drop. A White Australia immigration policy, only fully dismantled in the 1970s, and more recently off-shore migrant detention centres have also done much to frame the modern image of Australia abroad.

But many Australians also believe the problem can be overstated.

There is an element in Australian society that is racist, said John Blaxland, a professor of International Security at the Australian National University. But every country has them. Name a country that doesnt.

He insists the reality of modern Australia is a vibrant, booming, multicultural society that integ...

04:04

eX-detainees day statement : Do not bury eX-detainee voices or undermine over 2 decades of our labour towards dismantling immigration detention centres "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

We, eX-detainees at RISE in Australia, mark the 17th of September 2018 as eX-Detainees Day, for all asylum seekers and refugees who have been forcibly detained whilst seeking protection. This is our 3rd annual eX-detainees day. Crucially, this initiative is entirely managed and controlled by eX-detainees who are asylum seekers and refugees in Australia, as an assertion of our self-determination.

Asylum seeker and refugee detainees who have been detained or are currently detained in detention centres are among the most persecuted and oppressed people in the world. We have endured abuse in our own countries, and upon seeking protection, are disenfranchised and suffer institutional abuse within detention systems. eX-detainees

In this 3rd year of commemorating eX-detainees day we raise the collective voices of asylum seekers and refugees around the world, who are facing discrimination and criminalisation due to detention.  eX-Detainees Day will highlight and oppose all forms of refugee and asylum seeker detention that we are subjected to globally: whether the detention lasts 1 day, 30 days, 1 year, or longer periods of time.

We eX-detainees are thankful for those who have shown meaningful solidarity and allyship. We also like to see more eX-detainee voices put at the forefront in the refugee debate in Australia and across the world. In Australia, eX-detainees have been working towards dismantling immigration detention centres over two decades now. Do not bury eX-detainee voices as has been done continuously by successive Australian governments. Recognition, respect and autonomy should be given to many eX-detainees and detainees who have never compromised on the goal of abolishing detention centres and spoken out against detention centres, risking our freedom and families. Respect our voices and our well being. Here is the link to our demands http://riserefugee.org/exdetaineesdemands/

Last year we eX-detainees at RISE  established the #SanctionAustalia Campaign and we have received overwhelming support for the campaign in Australia and as well as across the world. Further, in the process of developing our Sanction Australia campaign, eX-detainees have been consulting with national and international wide activists, rights groups and civil society groups to endorse our Sanction Australia campaign.

We offshore and onshore eX-detainees from Australia strongly condemn successive Australian governments and other governments around the world for holding hostage our community members in detention torture camps across the world. We eX-detainees demand that all refugee survivors who are forcibly held in detention centres immediately release and provide them with permanent protection and proper support servic...

02:23

Darebin Council, Victoria leads the way on climate change action "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Its not too late to act on climate change, The Age, Paul Gilding 11 Sept 18,   People engaged in the climate debate are often bewildered by societys lack of response. How can we ignore such overwhelming evidence of an existential threat to social and economic stability?

. What is relatively new is that scientists and experts are increasingly acknowledging that nothing less than a massive global mobilisation on a WWII scale is required to address the catastrophic risks posed.
Professor Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, head of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, and a senior advisor to Pope Francis, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and the European Union recently argued that Climate change is now reaching the end-game, where very soon humanity must choose between taking unprecedented action, or accepting that it has been left too late and bear the consequences.
All around us examples of what these consequences might be are increasingly tangible. Whether it be wild fires in northern Sweden, refugee crises, extreme ice melt in the Arctic, submerged airports in Japan or severe droughts, people are feeling climate c...

00:33

Australia's new police state laws banning travel open to abuse in breach of Section 92? "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

Think it can't get any worse travelling between the colonies, well you're in for a surprise.

Those pesky people who invented the constitution in Australia, made it difficult for some MPs to be in office lawfully, under what the plebs are now aware of as Section 44.

To make things worse the numbers go all the way up to 128, where section 127 has a bit of liquid paper on it



Why couldn't they just stick with "do no harm", where life so much easier in the 'good ol' days' prior to this pesky occurrence called civilisation or something that has a bit more of a corporate slang like Civil CIVIC COMPLIANCE VICTORIA (ABN: 97 103 604 897)

Some plebs just recently became aware of Section 92 (via social media, of course), and get that wrong, and now even more pesky plebs are going to be aware of this section which talks about intercourse (no, not sexual silly) and get that wrong as well.

Thankfully we have the honest High Court of Australia to interpret Section 92 of the Commonwealth of Australia Constitution Act 1900 (UK), for those who may want to get there as their final destination.

See article from 12 September 2018 by brisbanetimes.com.au of the headline:


Fines or imprisonment for travellers if they do not comply with new police powers at airports

Travellers could face fines of up to $4200 or imprisonment if they do not comply with new police powers to request identification at Australian airports, eject people from the premises and ban them from flights.

Under legislation introduced to Parliament by the Morrison government on Tuesday, police will be able to carry out identity checks when they suspect people are involved in criminal activity that poses a threat to the public.

Police will be able to issue a "move on" direction if someone refuses to cooperate or if they believe it will disrupt an imminent security threat. The person can also be banned from entering airports for 24 hours.


...

00:08

Why Growth Cant Be Green "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

jason hickelBy Dr Jason Hickel, an anthropologist, author, and a fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.

Warnings about ecological breakdown have become ubiquitous. Over the past few years, major newspapers, including the Guardian and the New York Times, have carried alarming stories on soil depletion, deforestation, and the collapse of fish stocks and insect populations. These crises are being driven by global economic growth, and its accompanying consumption, which is destroying the Earths biosphere and blowing past key planetary boundaries that scientists say must be respected to avoid triggering collapse.

Many policymakers have responded by pushing for what has come to be called green growth. All we need to do, they argue, is invest in more efficient technology and introduce the right incentives, and well be able to keep growing while simultaneously reducing our impact on the natural world, which is already at an unsustainable level. In technical terms, the goal is to achieve absolute decoupling of GDP from the total use of natural resources, according to the U.N. definition.

It sounds like an elegant solution to an otherwise catastrophic problem. Theres just one hitch: New evidence suggests that green growth isnt the panacea everyone has been hoping for. In fact, it isnt even possible.

Green growth first became a buzz phrase in 2012 at the United Nations Conf...

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Thursday, 13 September

15:43

Join us to hear from Gabrielle Chan, author of Rusted Off "IndyWatch Feed Goulburn"

Voices for Indi is proudly hosting Gabrielle Chan, author of Rusted Off: Why Country Australia is Fed Up.  Events are planned in Mansfield, Albury, Violet Town, Wangaratta and Shepparton. 

Wednesday, 22 August

08:57

Singing the Camino: A tale of two trailblazers, walking and songs "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

You never know where life as a Singing Leader will take you next. Several years ago now, The Lucky Wonders, an indie folk pop band from Byron Bay, toured Germany. In need of a break after a few gruelling years in the music industry, Jessie Vintila and her partner Emma Royle took off for a drive through Spain and France, and found themselves in St Jean Pied de Port, a small French town at the foot of the Pyrenees.

Turns out, St Jean Pied de Port is a common starting place for people walking a spectacular stretch of the Camino Francs, the most famous of all the Pilgrimage routes across the mountains, and on this particular day the atmosphere of the town captivated them both in a powerful and life changing way.

We saw all these people in hiking gear with walking poles and there was a kind of magical hush over the town. There and then we got the bug for the Camino. Emma has been a keen hiker all her life and she was determined we would walk this track as soon as possible.

But with return flights booked and paid for it was time to head home to Australia leaving the two women unclear about how they could justify an imminent trip back to Europe. Being musicians its not that easy to travel across the world, Jessie laughs. Their quest was something to ponder, something requiring time and creative thinking but the vision and the place persisted to play in their thoughts.

On a walk out one evening, an idea and a solution to the situation popped clearly into Jessies headand after all that thinking it turned out, rather ironically, to be a bit of a no-brainer.

Jessie was fortunate to be born into a singing family. As a multi-instrumentalist for most of her life she has also been a passionate choir leader since she was 18: I cant get enough of it, Im an absolute harmony addict, I love having people all around me singing harmonies all the time. Emma, who is also a musician, is an ardent fan of walking.

The freshly hatched plan combined all these skills and, most importantly at that point in time, gave Jessie and Emma a legitimate reason to head back to the Camino together to explore the idea of setting up their potential new venture: A Singing tour of the Camino for other people to do.

If we could go over there and set up this project, we could do it!

Within a few months of their original visit, Jessie and Emma went back to Spain and walked all 800 blister-busting kilometres of the Camino. They decided to focus on the final 200km stretch which they decided would be the ideal distance for singing walkers to cover on a twelve day tour. A significant amo...

07:45

Trevor Ravenscroft and the Spirit World "IndyWatch Feed Vic"

This will allow us to begin to see a whole spiritual depth and significance behind every single manifestation of the physical world...

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