An alliance of business, welfare and environmental groups and trade unions has formed to produce a joint set of goals and principles on climate policy. The Australian Climate Roundtable announced its formation on June 29. The group formed to try to reset the highly politicised and entrenched debate in Australia on climate change. It aims to demonstrate to politicians and the broader community that there is more that unites the business, environment, union and social groups than divides when it comes to wanting action on climate change.
The Jubilee Debt Campaign (JDC) released figures in April showing the International Monetary Fund had made €2.5 billion of profit out of its loans to Greece since 2010. With Greece missing its June 30, deadline for a €1.6 billion payment to the IMF, the figure fell to €900 billion. But JDC said if Greece repays the IMF in full, the figure will rise to €4.3 billion by 2024.
More than 40 social workers, doctors, nurses, teachers and humanitarian staff who have worked inside Australia’s detention centres have signed an open letter challenging the government to prosecute them for disclosing abuses at detention centres. They have united in a show of defiance against the Border Force Act, which came into force on July 1, the day their letter was published. The Act criminalises the disclosure or recording of information about abuse occurring at detention centres.
The radioactive exposure tour — the RadTour — organised by Friends of the Earth and the Anti-uranium and Clean Energy collective (ACE), was on again this year from June 27 till July 8. Twenty-five people travelled from Melbourne through south and western NSW then onto South Australia. Green Left Weekly's Rachel Evans caught up with the RadTour at Lucas Heights and spoke to Dr Jim Green from Friends of the Earth. * * * How has the campaign to make Australia nuclear free been going?
Staff of the Immigration and Border Force agency marked the first day of their newly merged federal department on July 1 by going on strike for the second time in a week. Two-hour stoppages and meetings took place at seaports, workplaces and international airports, including Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Darwin, Perth and Adelaide. Significant disruption of services was reported.
My son goes to a sprawling public school that provides the majority of players for our local soccer (football) league in Washington DC. He plays on a team of boys and girls where, as is often the case with six-to-eight-year-olds, the girls frequently dominate on the field of play. In addition, his awesome classroom teacher played soccer at the most legendary women’s collegiate program in the United States.
The Defence Department’s website says: “Exercise Talisman Sabre 2015 is a biennial combined Australian and US training activity, designed to … improve the combat readiness and interoperability between our respective forces. This exercise is a major undertaking that reflects the closeness of our alliance and the strength of the ongoing military-military relationship” and is “focused on the planning and conduct of mid-intensity ‘high end’ warfighting.”
Bolivian President Evo Morales inaugurated a new football (soccer) stadium on June 24 in the central department of Cochabamba, naming the new athletic facility after the late Venezuelan revolutionary leader and president, Hugo Chavez. During his inauguration speech, Morales highlighted Chavez's legacy, saying: “He was a leader who possessed so much solidarity, as a president he taught us not be afraid of those who try to dominate us.”
Redfern Aboriginal Tent Embassy (RATE) has led a successful occupation of the Redfern Block for more than a year, calling for affordable Aboriginal housing to be built on the site. RATE has been fighting off attempts by the Aboriginal Housing Corporation (AHC), led by Mick Mundine, to develop the site with a $70 million commercial and residential development. In the 1960s and ’70s the Block became a focal point for the modern day urban land rights movement. Protests led to grassroots organisations such as the Aboriginal legal, medical cultural and housing services.
Command & Control Eric Schlosser Allen Lane, 2013 632 pages A Short History Of Nuclear Folly Rudolph Herzog Melville House, 2014 252 pages Atomic Comics: Cartoonists Confront The Nuclear Age Ferenc Szasz University of Nevada Press, 2013 179 pages Atomic bombs have only been used in warfare twice, but they have nearly been detonated, through accident or mistake, many more times, writes Eric Schlosser in his book on nuclear weapons mishaps, Command and Control.