Do we need to debate whether Australia should become a republic? After all, it is not just parties that say Australian society should be transformed (Socialist Alliance) or reformed (the Greens) that want a republic. The national leaders of the major capitalist political parties and all the state premiers agree on ending the situation where a British monarch is Australia's head of state. I suspect this is in line with what most Australians think: who gave birth to you should not make you the head of state, even nominally. So why is there an argument about this?
The Costa Rican Electricity Institute said it had achieved 99% renewable energy generation last year. It also said that for 285 days last year the country managed to power its grid on 100% renewable sources. The bulk of Costa Rica's power generation comes from hydropower thanks to a large river system and heavy tropical rainfalls. The rest is made up of a mix of geothermal energy, wind, biomass and solar power.
The 2016 summit of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) began on January 26 with the meeting of foreign ministers and chancellors of the Latin American nations at the headquarters of the Union of South American Nations (UNASUR) in Mitad del Mundo, Quito, Ecuador. CELAC, a regional body involving all nations in the Americas except for the United States and Canada, was officially created in Caracas in 2011 under the leadership of then-Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez.
Green Left Weekly is marking its 25th anniversary this week, which is a truly remarkable achievement for an independent paper without corporate funding — and one that could not be achieved without a lot of hard work over many years by more people than could be named.
The Queensland government gave Indian mining company Adani environmental approval to build Australia's largest coalmine in the Galilee Basin on February 3. Tony Fontes of the Environment Council of Central Queensland said: “This project has no money, no social license, is universally hated, and has been rejected by most of the world's largest banks. "With coal prices at an all-time low, support for protecting the Great Barrier Reef at an all-time high, the Palaszczuk government is treading a dangerous line in supporting this reef-wrecking coal project.”
Despite having the entire Democratic establishment against him, the self-described democratic socialist candidate in the US Democratic primaries, Bernie Sanders, continues to make waves, backed by huge enthusiasm from supporters inspired by his call for a “political revolution” against the corporate elite. Although Sanders fell short in the Democratic Iowa caucuses on February 1, he picked up 84% of the youth vote.
"WOW. This is something you don't often see. Goldman Sachs says it may have to question capitalism itself." So went the tweet from Bloomberg TV correspondent Joseph Weisenthal. I wondered what could possibly cause one of the world’s largest investment banks, a company that is heavily invested in capitalism (both literally and figuratively) to “question capitalism itself”? Why isn't this bigger news?
After two decades of failing to secure a nuclear waste dump site in South Australia and the Northern Territory through a top down approach, early last year the federal government initiated a voluntary nomination process calling on landholders to put forward their land for assessment. A shortlist of six was released after 28 sites were nominated around Australia: Hill End in NSW; Omanama in Queensland; Hale in the Northern Territory; Cortlinye and Pinkawillinie in the Kimba region of South Australia; and Barndioota station in the Flinders Ranges, South Australia.
Over the next five years, France will install 1000 kilometres of solar roadway using Colas' Wattway solar pavement. The collaboration between Colas, a transport infrastructure company, and France's National Institute for Solar Energy (INES) is sanctioned by France's Agency of Environment and Energy Management. The new Wattway system does not replace the road itself, but is designed to be glued onto the top of existing pavement.
One of the epic miscarriages of justice of our time is unravelling. The United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention — an international tribunal that adjudicates and decides whether governments comply with their human rights obligations — has ruled that Julian Assange has been detained unlawfully by Britain and Sweden.
Although about 99% of Victoria's volcanic plains grasslands have been destroyed by development, some outstanding remnants of this unique ecosystem persist, especially on the western fringes of Melbourne. The grasslands ecosystem was listed by the federal government as critically endangered in 2008. But at the same time, the then-Labor government of Victoria was initiating an expansion of Melbourne's Urban Growth Boundary that would severely impact some of its best remaining areas.
This week marks 25 years since Green Left Weekly was launched. When it was first published on February 18, 1991, Bob Hawke was prime minister, the worst drought in Australia's recorded history was beginning and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) had just released its First Assessment Report, which concluded that “immediate reductions in emissions from human activities of over 60% [were needed] to stabilise their concentrations at today's levels”.