Environment and Climate

Emily O'Gorman reviews 'Endurance: Australian Stories of Drought' by Deb Anderson

Emily O'Gorman

The Millennium Drought already looms large in Australia's recent past. It has joined the ranks of the Federation Drought and other acute, lengthy dry periods that have national resonance and are reflected on by historians, farmers, and politicians alike as defining moments in Australia's history. These droughts are etched into landscapes and people's minds, bodies, ... More

Ruth A. Morgan reviews 'Slick Water' by Andrew Nikiforuk

Ruth A. Morgan

In January 2016, Canadian Jessica Ernst had her day in court. Lawyers for the former oil industry insider debated whether she could sue the Alberta energy regulator over her claim that hydraulic fracturing had so badly contaminated her well that the water could be set on fire. This hearing in the Supreme Court of Canada is the latest chapter in Ernst's twelve-year b ... More

Ian Lowe reviews 'The Optimistic Environmentalist' by David R. Boyd

Ian Lowe

This is a timely and important book, a message of hope when human civilisation is on a metaphorical Titanic steaming toward an ecological iceberg, with the short-sighted or unprincipled throwing coal into the boilers. My heart sank when I saw the title. I expected more mindless cheer-mongering: blanket assertions of faith that human ingenuity and economic g ... More

'Creating a Wetland' a photo essay by Jo Daniell

Jo Daniell

Gleneira - sepia

This photograph taken around 1890 shows what was done through over-clearing and grazing. Fifteen years ago, our property on the Mornington Peninsula featured two overused stock dams filled with opaque brown water. The muddy edges had no vege ... More

Peter Menkhorst reviews 'The Dingo Debate' edited by Bradley Smith

Peter Menkhorst

Australia’s wild dog, the dingo, probably generates the most diverse human responses of any of our fauna – from a determination to exterminate to passionate conservation advocacy. This book is a bold attempt to cover this diversity and asserts that the dingo is a unique wild animal worthy of conservation for its intrinsic value, ... More

Cameron Muir reviews 'Keeping the Wild' edited by George Wuerthner, Eileen Crist, and Tom Butler

Cameron Muir

In the United States, a battle is raging between two factions of environmental advocates and ecologists. On one side, those who associate themselves with the tradition of Henry David Thoreau, John Muir, and Aldo Leopold argue for the need to expand protected areas and to reduce the human presence. The other side has embraced the neo-liberal agenda and partnere ... More

Ian Lowe reviews 'Letters to my Grandchildren' by David Suzuki

Ian Lowe

David Suzuki is well known in this country. Since he was brought to Australia by the Commission for the Future nearly thirty years ago, he has been back for many festivals and conferences. Truly a man of many parts, he was a distinguished geneticist and a leading professor in the field when it emerged as a separate discipline within the biological sciences. As ... More

Danielle Clode reviews 'Cave' by Ralph Crane and Lisa Fletcher

Danielle Clode

What is it about caves? An irresistibly enchanting hidey-hole to any small child and yet the birthplace of our deepest fears. Dragons, narguns, goblins, and gorgons are all born of caves, and yet who can go past an opening in the rock without peeking in? We cannot resist exploring this underworld of darkness which seems to provide safety from the perils outside, whi ... More

Ruth A. Morgan reviews 'The Handbook' by Jane Rawson and James Whitmore

Ruth A. Morgan

Although the mantra ‘Don’t panic, but get prepared’ guides Jane Rawson and James Whitmore’s handbook for Surviving and Living with Climate Change, they certainly do not paint a pretty picture of climate-change Australia. The scenarios are alarming: Australia will be hotter, drier in some parts, wetter in others, with more frequent bushfires, floods, a ... More

'Sabotage: How the attack on renewables undermines government' by David Schlosberg

David Schlosberg

‘Pathetically inadequate’ was probably the most frequent description of the government’s voluntary emissions proposal for the United Nations Climate Change Conference; the description fits their climate and en ... More

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