Modelling should be a chance to test your assumptions, not just confirm them.
We need to move past biased, opaque models for energy policies.
Blue whales are the largest creatures to have ever lived on Earth.
The only sea creature known to attack blue whales is the orca, also known as a 'killer whale'. But humans present a much bigger threat to them.
Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and federal energy minister Josh Frydenberg have been forced to back down on plans to legislate emissions reductions for the electricity sector.
AAP Image/Mick Tsikas
Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has abandoned the emissions-reduction component of his signature energy policy, in the latest chapter of a brutal decade-long saga for Australian climate policy.
A 6.9 magnitude earthquake led to the collapse of thousands of houses in the northern parts of the Indonesian island of Lombok.
Adi Weda / AAP
Hundreds of thousands of people are homeless following the Lombok earthquakes. Much of this suffering need not have happened if houses were constructed to better withstand shaking.
Fires burning in NSW are harbingers of what’s to come.
The same day all of New South Wales was declared in drought, the state's Rural Fire Service issued its earliest ever total fire bans.
Marine parks protect fragile ecosystems, like coral reefs.
What would you do if you saw a fisher breaking the law? Would you report the offender to the police? Confront them? Or would you do nothing? These choices affect the future of marine protected areas.
Melbourne’s temperatures have periodically spiked far beyond what its residents are used to.
AAP Image/Ellen Smith
Heatwaves can cause a large number of deaths, especially when vulnerable groups are unprepared and are not acclimatised to hot temperatures.
What’s that on the horizon? Ah yes, renewable energy.
AAP Image/Mick Tsikas
Renewable energy investment is gathering steam throughout the world. Australia's National Energy Guarantee policy should be made agile enough to jump on board, because this runaway train won't stop.
Pilostyles are only visible when their fruit and flowers erupt out of their host plants.
Only when flowering is Pilostyles visible externally, the flowers erupting from the stems of its host like a weird botanical Alien.
Ministers at the last COAG Energy Council meeting, in April 2018. Some faces have since changed, while some states have entrenched their positions.
AAP Image/James Ross
As energy ministers head into a crucial meeting with their federal counterpart Josh Frydenberg, our state-by-state guide compares their various stances on the future of the National Energy Guarantee.
Felicity Burke/The Conversation
Urban trees are literally made with the help of human breath – they turn the carbon dioxide we breathe out into the building blocks of plant growth. So your local trees have a piece of you inside them.
Farmers need help to plan for droughts, not just to respond to them when things get desperate.
The government has offered emergency payments to drought-stricken farmers. But if we really care about them, we'll also invest in long-term drought resilience measures to reduce impacts.
Thousands of houses has been destroyed by earthquakes in Indonesia.
As Indonesia reels from two deadly earthquakes, it's time to rebuild smarter and stronger.
Australian plants leave a unique pollen signature in our honey.
Australia's distinctive native plants give our honey a distinctive stamp. Welcome to melissopalynology: the study of pollen.
Josh Frydenberg and Malcolm Turnbull both know that the history books make for uncomfortable reading when it comes to emissions policy.
AAP Image/Lukas Coch
The National Energy Guarantee faces a crunch test this week. And if the climate wars of the past few decades are any guide, Australian policies more often sink than swim when the waters get choppy.
Buying reusable bags every time you shop is worse than just using plastic.
Desalination is an extraordinarily expensive option.
Farmers are calling for South Australia to ramp up its desalination plant to free up more water from the Murray Darling.
Blue-sky thinking? It’s hard to assess the evidence base for the predicted outcomes of the National Energy Guarantee.
AAP Image/Dan Himbrechts
The final design of the National Energy Guarantee promises that the policy will drive down power prices. But there is precious little evidence for this assertion.
Single-use biodegradable plastics include claims that they break down quickly into benign end products, but the reality is more complex.
New types of biodegradable or compostable plastic products seem to offer an alternative to conventional plastics. But they may be no better for the environment.
Sea turtle eating a plastic bag.
Plastic bags are commonly mistaken for food by sea animals. They require a lot of energy and resources to be made, and have caused floods in some countries.
Offering free lightweight plastic bags causes excessive plastic use, while banning lightweight bags can increase the use of heavier plastic bags (such as bin liners). Coles’ decision brings out the worst of both worlds.
Providing thicker plastic bags for free is worse than pointless. It encourages the same wasteful habits, but with more damaging material.
Predatory fish are among the most vulnerable species to human pressures.
The world has some 500 million square kilometres of ocean. But just 55 million square kilometres remain untouched by intensive human activities such as fishing.
Can geoengineering buy the coral reefs more time?
Oregon State University/Flickr
Climate mitigation efforts are unlikely to be enough to save critical ecosystems like the Great Barrier Reef. We may need to consider more radical environmental engineering.
Taking the long view is difficult when it comes to something as complex as energy policy.
AAP Image/Dan Himbrechts
A policy that aims to reshape the electricity sector needs to be judged on its numbers. But the lack of public modelling from the Energy Security Board makes it impossible for analysts to do this.
Survivors of the dam disaster take refuge at a temporary shelter in Laos’s Attapeu province.
ABC Laos News/EPA
Images of the aftermath of the Xepian-Xe Nam Noy dam collapse in Laos went around the world. But many other dam projects harm locals and the environment in less visible ways.