Articles on Queensland

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Idiospermum is otherwise known as “idiot fruit” or ribbonwood. via Wikimedia Commons

It’s hard to spread the idiot fruit

In a few idyllic parts of Queensland grows the idiot fruit, a tall tree with intricate flowers and some of the largest seeds in Australia.
Successive governments have seen the Great Barrier Reef not just as a scientific wonder, but as a channel to further economic development. Superjoseph/Shutterstock.com

Politicised science on the Great Barrier Reef? It’s been that way for more than a century

The $444 million awarded to the Great Barrier Reef Foundation has been criticised as a politically calculated move. But governments have been asking what the reef can do for them ever since colonial times.
The Walk Together marches across Australia in 2015 showed how welcoming regional communities are to refugees. Richard Milnes/AAP

Refugees are integrating just fine in regional Australia

New research shows that refugees in regional Queensland have found it very easy to make friends and feel safe and comfortable raising children in their communities.
As the name suggests, Windy Hill near Cairns gets its fair share of power-generating weather. Leonard Low/Flickr/Wikimedia Commons

New coal doesn’t stack up – just look at Queensland’s renewable energy numbers

There are calls from the backbench and elsewhere for the federal government to safeguard the future of coal. But do those calls make economic sense? A look at Queensland's energy landscape suggests not.
South-East Queensland residents need to prepare for more regular floods, according to new data. Shutterstock

South-East Queensland is droughtier and floodier than we thought

We rely on climate data to help us make important decisions for our future, such as building infrastructure. But what if a region's climate has long been more volatile than we realised?
With, for now, three Senate votes as her bargaining chips, Hanson’s impact – on government policy or on the major parties’ electoral strategy – is still being felt. AAP/Peter Mathew

Twenty years on, One Nation is still chaotic, controversial and influential

Despite its dysfunction and often inconsistent policy positions, the party has cemented an influential place in the federal arena, albeit a status that’s on the verge of diminishing drastically.
Victoria has led the way in upgrading intercity rail services with medium-speed VLocity trains that have a cruising speed of 160km/h. Joe Castro/AAP

Let’s get moving with the affordable medium-speed alternatives to the old dream of high-speed rail

High-speed rail for Australia has been on the drawing boards since the mid-1980s but has come to nothing. Three states are developing medium-speed rail with federal funding, but NSW is missing out.
Floods in South East Queensland follow a 40-year cycle, and planners should take note. AAP Image

Floods don’t occur randomly, so why do we still plan as if they do?

Engineering practice assumes that floods are randomly distributed but science suggests they are not. This raises questions about the reliability of flood infrastructure and management strategies.
Vegetation ‘thinning’ in Queensland - a practice that was originally designed to restore forests and woodlands to a ‘representative state’. WWF-Australia

Queensland’s new land clearing bill will help turn the tide, despite its flaws

Queensland's new draft land-clearing laws aim to put the brakes on years of environmental destruction. But the bill contains several loopholes that are likely to stymie progress.
An artist’s impression of the Wakaleo schouteni marsupial ‘lion’ challenging a thylacine over the carcass of a kangaroo in the early Miocene rainforest of Riversleigh. Peter Schouten

A new species of marsupial lion tells us about Australia’s past

'Marsupial lions' aren't really lions - but they did have teeth that formed a pair of secateur-like blades. The newly found species lived in forests of Queensland around 20 million years ago.

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