Good news (for a change)

February 18, 2017

Firefighters save flying foxes

Temperatures above 40°C on February 10 and 11 were perilous for Canberra’s flying fox colony in Commonwealth Park.

Extreme heat can cause them to become distressed and sometimes die, as happened in Singleton, where temperatures over 45°C killed hundreds of grey-headed flying foxes.

Knowing the risk to the animals, volunteers from ACT wildlife, the National Capital Authority, Jerrabomberra Rural Fire Service Brigade and ACT Fire and Rescue combined to spray water on the animals.

ACT Wildlife said cooling the area was lifesaving for the colony.

Stirring up the colony also prevented dehydration as it encouraged bats to fly over Lake Burley Griffin and drink water, something they do not typically do until sunset.


Health fund divests from fossil fuels

HCF has become the first Australian private health fund to divest from fossil fuels, saying the industry harms the health and wellbeing of its members.

The move means it will pull about $20 million out of fossil fuel companies in Australia and overseas.

In a letter to the campaign group Market Forces, HCF said it would be divesting from fossil fuels on the same grounds it used for pulling out of the tobacco industry.

It expects to make an announcement by the end of March, when it has sold all its shares in fossil fuel-related companies.

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