Grattan on Friday: Will bolshie Nationals or Joe Biden have more sway with Morrison on 2050 target?

Originally published on Many observers have been assuming Scott Morrison’s strategy is to creep towards endorsing the 2050 target of net zero emissions, finally embracing it before the Glasgow climate conference in November. But this week’s developments suggest the prime minister might have to adopt another course. He could stay with his present position, […]

Australians under 60 will no longer receive the AstraZeneca vaccine. So what’s changed?

Originally published on Australians aged under 60 will no longer receive first doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine due to the rare risk of a serious blood clotting disorder among people aged 50 to 59. The government has accepted the advice of the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI), which recommends those aged under […]

The Biden-Putin summit: no magic reset of relations, but no hitting the snooze button, either

Originally published on Patrick Semansky/AP Much speculation surrounded the lead up to the just concluded summit in Geneva between US President Joe Biden and his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin. Coming after a NATO meeting where Biden reaffirmed his commitment to preserve Ukraine’s territorial integrity and sought to bolster the alliance against information warfare, it […]

We moved hundreds of tonnes of rock to preserve the dinosaur footprints of the Snake Creek Tracksite

Originally published on Fossilised bones belonging to enormous long-necked sauropod dinosaurs have been known from western Queensland since the 1930s, when Austrosaurus mckillopi was discovered on Clutha Station near Maxwelton. Since then, western Queensland has yielded many more sauropod bones and skeletons, particularly in the past two decades. But the footprints of these behemoths, […]

Australia’s 2.5% minimum wage rise: there’s something in it for you, and the economy

Originally published on Australia has a serious wage problem. Over the past decade wages for all but the top 20% of income earners have flat-lined. This is part of the longer-term problem concerning productivity and wages identified by groups like the OECD – namely, workers have not shared in productivity gains, with “labour market […]

Why a carbon price alone won’t be enough to drive down New Zealand’s emissions

Originally published on Kai Schwoerer/Getty Images With its emissions budgets, the Climate Change Commission’s final advice to the government charts a course towards a low-emissions economy. But its comprehensive policy package is arguably the more decisive element — targets can only be achieved if the right policies are in place. For many years, the […]

NZ’s clean car discount is a turn in the right direction, but how much will it drive consumer demand?

Originally published on New Zealand faces two enormous challenges if it is to meet its international climate change commitments under the Paris Agreement: biogenic methane emissions from agriculture, and carbon emissions from industry and transport. For now, there seems little prospect of significantly reducing agricultural emissions, short of reducing actual livestock numbers, because […]

Which COVID vaccine is best? Here’s why that’s really hard to answer

Originally published on from With the rollout of COVID-19 vaccines accelerating, people are increasingly asking which vaccine is best? According to Google Trends, more and more people want to know. Even if we tried to answer this question, defining which vaccine is “best” is not simple. Does that mean the vaccine better at […]

European Masterpieces from the Met demonstrates art’s power to speak to the human condition

Originally published on Caravaggio (Michelangelo Merisi) Italy 1571–1610 The Musicians 1597 Oil on canvas 92.1 x 118.4cm Rogers Fund, 1952 / 52.81 Collection: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York Review: European Masterpieces from the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Queensland Art Gallery & Gallery of […]

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Acting PM Michael McCormack on net zero 2050 and prospects for a new coal-fired power station

Originally published on With Scott Morrison overseas, Nationals leader Michael McCormack has been Acting Prime Minister this week. In this podcast, he speaks about the free trade agreement with the UK, climate change, coal, the Nationals, and China. With speculation about whether Morrison will embrace a 2050 net zero target before the Glasgow climate […]