Articles on Queensland

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Beautiful one day … a quarry the next? Underwater Earth / Catlin Seaview Survey - www.catlinseaviewsurvey.com

Great Barrier Reef decision is a U-turn to an inglorious past

Few of us remember that the declaration of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park and its subsequent World Heritage status was born out a 12-year popular struggle to prevent the most wondrous coral reef in…
Eroded beaches in Surfers Paradise on Queensland’s Gold Coast, May 2013. John Reid, Environment Studio, ANU School of Art

Scrapping sea level protection puts Australian homes at risk

As the science on the coastal impacts of climate change gets stronger, the protections for Australia’s coastal communities are getting weaker. If that continues, everyone will pay. Along the eastern seaboard…
Brisbane cyclists have to keep their helmets on after all, including on bike paths. AAP/Dan Peled

Politics trumps hard-headed reason on bicycle helmets

For a few hours, late last week, it looked like Queensland could become the first Australian state to start relaxing its strict bicycle helmet laws. After months of careful review of the evidence, a state…
A scuba diving tourist feeds a giant potato cod in the Great Barrier Reef. Pete Niesen/Shutterstock.com

Dredging set to swamp decades of Great Barrier Reef protection

After decades of work, A$200 million in taxpayer funding and even more from farmers’ pockets, we finally have a rare good news story to tell about the Great Barrier Reef. Thanks to an extraordinary effort…
Queensland has witnessed many firsts in Australian politics, and is set to be the first state in Australia to institute controversial voter ID laws. AAP/Martin Silk

Voter ID laws will fail poor, Indigenous and homeless Queenslanders

The Queensland government last week introduced a bill to parliament that, when passed, will make voter identification a prerequisite for casting a ballot. This is a first for Australia and follows several…
A dead dingo in 2013 (left) and a Tasmanian tiger, last seen in the wild in 1932. Dingo photography by Aaron Greenville; a hunted thylacine in 1869, photographer unknown.

Will we hunt dingoes to the brink like the Tasmanian tiger?

The last Tasmanian tiger died a lonely death in the Hobart Zoo in 1936, just 59 days after new state laws aimed at protecting it from extinction were passed in parliament. But the warning bells about its…
Voters in Griffith will soon be forced back to the polls – only this time, there’ll be no Kevin Rudd. Who will win the south Brisbane seat? Liz Minchin

Rudd’s poor timing will likely cost ALP in Griffith

Kevin Rudd’s final speech in parliament last night was delivered in his customary egocentric fashion. There will be many think pieces on Rudd’s career and his legacy, but perhaps the more interesting immediate…
The Queensland government is preparing the way for more coal ports, but there are indications coal production and profits are on the way down. AAP Image/Alan Porritt

If coal’s in trouble, why build more coal ports?

If the Abbot Point expansion is approved by the Commonwealth Environment Minister next month, port dredging will go ahead. Private investment in coal ports and rail may no longer stack up, as BHP Billiton…
Singapore’s Marina Bay is viewed as a role model for casino precincts. Slack12/Flickr

Casino precincts and tourism: gambling our way to prosperity?

Last month Queensland Premier Campbell Newman called for expressions of interest to develop a major integrated resort casino precinct within the Brisbane CBD. The vision is for a new casino surrounded…
Port developments shouldn’t be assessed individually. AAP Image/Dave Hunt

It all adds up: port development on the Great Barrier Reef

The Queensland and Australian government’s draft strategic assessment of the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area has been released today. The strategic assessment was prompted by the 2012 UNESCO-IUCN…
Remote beauty: Twin Falls in Cape York. www.shutterstock.com/John Carnemolla

The battle for Cape York: whose vision will win out?

From its stunning wetlands in the west, across a dry central spine, to the coastal heathlands and rainforests in the east, Cape York Peninsula is deservedly world-famous for its rugged beauty. For many…
The new laws against bikie gangs in Queensland are meant to be ‘tough’ but will innocent riders be affected? AAP image

FactCheck: will the Queensland bikie laws affect innocent riders?

“This legislation will target only criminal motorcycle gang members. Other law abiding motorbike riders have nothing to worry about,” Queensland Attorney-General Jarrod Bleijie, press release, October…
Queensland attorney-general Jarrod Bleijie has taken decisions about detaining sex offenders in prison after their sentences have been served into his own hands. shutterstock

Listen up, Queensland – courts are for justice, politicians are for politics

There is a good constitutional reason for not allowing politicians to make decisions which result in imprisonment. It’s called the separation of powers and is meant to ensure that politics does not intrude…
Should it be the role of the Constitution to protect individual rights from being trampled on, such as by Queensland’s newly-introduced anti-bikie legislation? AAP/Dan Peled

Bikies crackdown: did the Constitution fail Queensland?

Last week, Queensland’s state government introduced a number of tough new law and order measures targeting serious sexual offenders and bikies. Under the new laws, bikie gang members in Queensland face…
In Queensland, the Finks motorcycle gang are among those in the gun of police, the state government, the media and the public. AAP/Joe Castro

A phony war: bikies aren’t the only problem on Queensland’s Glitter Strip

Bikies have become the poster boys of crime in Queensland. In the past week we’ve seen the announcement of a spartan, bikies-only jail likened to Guantanamo Bay, tough new laws rushed through a marathon…
The tail on Clive Palmer’s Palmer United Party (PUP) certainly wagged at the ballot box on Saturday. AAP/Dave Hunt

How the Palmer United Party came out barking

A funny thing happened at the polls in Queensland over the weekend. To great surprise, the two right-of-centre minor parties - Katter’s Australian Party (KAP) and the recently-established Palmer United…
Queensland has a disproportionate number of marginal seats, making it a key battleground. Image from shutterstock.com

State of the states: Queensland

STATE OF THE STATES: a snapshot of the key issues affecting each state and territory in the lead up to Saturday’s election. With more marginal seats than any state other than New South Wales - and easily…

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