Articles on Power

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Hydrogen is built into helium at a temperature of millions of degrees. NASA/SDO (AIA)

Before fusion: a human history of fire

Fire has played a vital role in human history, and will continue to. Recent advances in fusion herald the freeing of fire from captivity back into its natural form.
In Nigeria 96% of households are connected to the grid, but only 18% of these connections function more than about half the time. Akintunde Akinleye/Reuters

What lies behind Africa’s lack of access and unreliable power supplies

Africa still has numerous electricity challenges to overcome, but several countries are getting it right when it comes to providing electricity to their people.
Gas prices: are we being scammed? Calum Moy

Attacks on the Big Six over gas prices miss a key point

Following intense pressure from consumer groups, politicians and the media, the UK’s Big Six power companies have all announced price reductions on some of their gas tariffs. Cuts ranged from Npower’s…
Laughter and violence have two things in common: they’re both non-verbal and they both occur when words fail. Cloud Mine Amsterdam/Shutterstock

What Charlie Hebdo says about laughter, violence and free speech

It should come as no surprise that comedians would feel threatened by the attack on Charlie Hebdo: the freedom to offend is the source of their livelihood, and many who have offended have been threatened…
Should you be paying for big energy users? Bill image from

RET changes may leave households to foot the bill

The federal government has now achieved passage of its Direct Action plan through the Senate. Some wheeling and dealing with the cross-benches was required of course – but while the government may oppose…
The sun is setting on a heavily coal-dependent power sector, a new Climate Council report argues. Tao Zero/Flickr

Australia’s ancient electricity sector urgently needs a new plan

It takes 10 years or more to plan, permit, finance and build major new power plants. That means the decisions we make today – or don’t make – will have lasting consequences for generations to come. And…
Alcoa is to close its Point Henry smelter in Geelong. AAP

Australian aluminium outgunned by cheap, coal-free global rivals

Alcoa’s decision to close the Point Henry smelter, at a cost of almost 1000 jobs in Geelong and elsewhere, comes amid a perfect storm buffeting Australia’s aluminium industry. Point Henry will be the second…
Brisbane’s annual City of Lights show, which is sponsored by an oil and gas company. Flickr/Wei Lun Koh (some rights reserved)

When will Australians finally stop wasting our energy?

From flicking on a light to travelling around town, our lives are utterly dependent on energy. That’s why it’s so surprising that Australia has been so bad at thinking about our country’s future energy…
Workers assemble air conditioners at a factory in China earlier this year. EPA/SHEPHERD ZHOU CHINA OUT

Australia’s rising air con use makes us hot and bothered

With temperatures starting to climb, it’s time to think about how we will stay cool this summer. The stakes are getting higher when it comes to hot weather. As the Australian Medical Association has warned…

A folded portable power

By folding a paper-based Li-ion battery, Arizona State University scientists have proven that you can increase the areal…
Bees are dying, but scientists and beekeepers are at loggerheads over what to do about it. Nick Ansell/PA

Sometimes science can’t see the wood for the bees

The EU banned the use of neonicotinoid pesticides for two years in April, after a sustained campaign by beekeepers, green groups and environmental organisations across Europe. These groups are convinced…

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