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Christmas Island tropical tour a waste of taxpayer cash

Normal text size Larger text size Very large text size Australians just paid about $2000 a minute for a press conference on Christmas Island that told them nothing new. Prime Minister Scott Morrison and his entourage spoke at the event for less than 30 minutes after landing on the island in a Royal Australian Air…

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Christmas Island tropical tour a waste of taxpayer cash

imageNormal text size Larger text size Very large text size Australians just paid about $2000 a minute for a press conference on Christmas Island that told them nothing new.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison and his entourage spoke at the event for less than 30 minutes after landing on the island in a Royal Australian Air Force jet.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison tours North West Point Detention Centre on Christmas Island on Wednesday. Credit: AAP
This breezy outlay of taxpayer cash is cynical and wasteful just weeks before the government releases a federal budget that will confirm deficits of $360 billion over the past decade.
A government that once crusaded on a budget emergency is now soaking taxpayers to save itself at the May election.
Advertisement The RAAF Boeing 737 is an expensive jet to run. The government’s own documents show it costs about $22,000 to fly it from Sydney to Broome, with several thousand dollars more for the hop to Christmas Island.

Illustration: Matt Golding Credit:
The flight from Christmas Island to Perth costs about $15,000 and the return to Canberra another $14,000.

These are approximate figures based on flights taken in previous years and costed by the RAAF.
That means the Wednesday press conference cost roughly $60,000 in flights alone, and no doubt more when ancillary costs on the ground are taken into account.
(Journalists, including from The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age joined the flight to cover the event, given Morrison was taking questions on a major policy and election issue, but media companies pay for the flights and do not expect taxpayers to foot the bill.)
Morrison and the Immigration Minister, David Coleman, used the press conference to make several points.

There are no children left in detention on Nauru and Manus Island. The government has closed 19 detention centres over five years. Boat arrivals have stopped.
Australians have heard each of these arguments before, usually at no extra charge in a press conference from Parliament House.

The publicity about Christmas Island is a risk in itself. When the Nine Network’s Renae Henry asked an Indonesian people smuggler what he thought of the reopening of the Christmas Island centre, he seemed to regard it as encouragement to restart the boats.
“In my opinion if it is reopened I agree and am ready to ferry,” he told her three weeks ago.
The cost of this media stunt is small compared to the tens of millions of dollars being spent on government advertising campaigns, but it sends another signal about the government’s anxiety.

Morrison did not need the tropical backdrop of Christmas Island to make his case. There are perfectly good palm trees in Sydney.
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Environment

Global warming: Children’s climate strike spreads worldwide

Climate strikes spread worldwide as students call for action 15 March 2019 These are external links and will open in a new window Close share panel Media playback is unsupported on your device Media caption Climate change: Fears about effects of pollution and climate change Thousands of school pupils worldwide have abandoned classrooms for a…

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Global warming: Children’s climate strike spreads worldwide

imageClimate strikes spread worldwide as students call for action 15 March 2019 These are external links and will open in a new window Close share panel Media playback is unsupported on your device Media caption Climate change: Fears about effects of pollution and climate change Thousands of school pupils worldwide have abandoned classrooms for a day of protest against climate change.
India, South Korea, Australia and the US are among the countries where teenagers are already on strike.
The day of action is expected to embrace about 100 countries. They are inspired by Swedish teenager Greta Thunberg, who protests weekly outside Sweden’s parliament.
Scientists say tougher measures are needed to cut global warming.
The Paris climate agreement of 2017 committed nearly 200 countries to keeping global temperatures “well below” 2.0C (3.6F) above pre-industrial times and to striving for a maximum of 1.

5C.
In January at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, the 16-year-old told top executives and politicians that “on climate change, we have to acknowledge that we have failed”. Image copyright Reuters Image caption Société Générale bank in Paris: The banner says “Banks are dirtying our future – blockade them” Image copyright AFP Image caption “We can’t drink oil, we can’t breathe money”: Students protest next to Rome’s Colosseum
Ministers in some countries have voiced concern about children skipping classes.
Australia’s Education Minister Dan Tehan said “students leaving school during school hours to protest is not something that we should encourage”.
UK Education Secretary Damian Hinds echoed that concern, and the government said the disruption increased teachers’ workloads and wasted lesson time.
But Environment Secretary Michael Gove backed the protesting children, saying in a video: “Dear school climate strikers, we agree.


“Collective action of the kind you’re championing can make a difference, and a profound one,” he said. Image copyright AFP Image caption Delhi: The student protests are big in the capital and in Kolkata Image copyright EPA Image caption Hong Kong: Students protested outside the main government offices What are your climate questions? Climate change
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Is there a question about climate change you’d like us to answer? Tell us by using the form below.
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Climate strikes: students around the world walk out to demand change – live | Environment | The Guardian

Young people, inspired by Greta Thunberg, rally to press politicians to act on climate change. Skip to main content The Guardian – Back to home Support The Guardian Available for everyone, funded by readers Contribute Subscribe Contribute Search jobs Sign in My account Comments & replies Public profile Account details Emails & marketing Membership Contributions…

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Climate strikes: students around the world walk out to demand change – live | Environment | The Guardian

imageYoung people, inspired by Greta Thunberg, rally to press politicians to act on climate change. Skip to main content The Guardian – Back to home Support The Guardian Available for everyone, funded by readers Contribute Subscribe Contribute Search jobs Sign in My account Comments & replies Public profile Account details Emails & marketing Membership Contributions Subscriptions Sign out Search switch to the International edition switch to the UK edition switch to the US edition switch to the Australia edition current edition: International edition News Opinion Sport Culture Lifestyle Show More News World news UK news Science Cities Global development Football Tech Business Environment Obituaries Opinion The Guardian view Columnists Cartoons Opinion videos Letters Sport Football Rugby union Cricket Tennis Cycling F1 Golf US sports Culture Books Music TV & radio Art & design Film Games Classical Stage Lifestyle Fashion Food Recipes Love & sex Health & fitness Home & garden Women Men Family Travel Money What term do you want to search? Search with google Make a contribution Subscribe International edition switch to the UK edition switch to the US edition switch to the Australia edition Search jobs Dating Holidays Digital Archive Discount Codes The Guardian app Video Podcasts Pictures Newsletters Today’s paper Inside the Guardian The Observer Guardian Weekly Crosswords Facebook Twitter Search jobs Dating Holidays Digital Archive Discount Codes Environment Climate change Wildlife Energy Pollution More Climate change Climate strikes held around the world – as it happened
Young people, inspired by Greta Thunberg, rally to press politicians to act on climate change
Sign up for our Green Light environment email Make a contribution to support the Guardian’s independent journalism and our unique commitment to climate reporting Updated Play Video 1:51 Students around the world go on climate strike – video Jessica Glenza (now), Alan Evans , Hannah Ellis-Petersen and Naaman Zhou (then)
Fri 15 Mar 2019 21.43 GMT First published on Thu 14 Mar 2019 22.33 GMT
Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share via Email Key events Show 9.09pm GMT 21:09 Mexico 7.

48pm GMT 19:48 Canada 7.

30pm GMT 19:30 Chile 5.56pm GMT 17:56 UN secretary general calls for climate summit 4.

56pm GMT 16:56 US Congresswoman – and her daughter – speak to activists 6.15am GMT 06:15 Delhi 10.06am GMT 10:06 Germany Live feed Show 9.43pm GMT 21:43
Thank you for following our coverage Over 24 hours of climate action , organizers of the climate strike believe more than 1 million students skipped school on Friday or protest government inaction on climate change. From Australia and New Zealand , to Asia, Europe, Africa, North America and South America , students from all over the world took to the streets to demand change. Organizers said there were more than 2,000 protests in 125 countries . The student movement was inspired by 16-year-old Greta Thunberg , now nominated for a Nobel Prize , who kicked off a global movement after she sat outside Swedish parliament every Friday beginning last August. Many students expressed anger, fear and disappointment that adults have not acted.

Many also expressed hope for a green economy within 11 years, the timeframe experts at the United Nations believe is necessary to forestall catastrophic climate change. Even as students demanded change, some ignored their pleas, including diplomatic delegations from the US, who watered down agreements to eliminate single-use plastics . Sign up for our Green Light environment email for more on climate action.
Students take part in a “youth strike to act on climate change” demonstration in Nantes, France, March 15, 2019.

Photograph: Stéphane Mahé/Reuters
To wrap up, here are the words of Hannah Laga Abram, an 18-year-old from Santa Fe, New Mexico , and just one of the one million students who protested today:
We are living in the sixth mass extinction. Ice is melting. Forests are burning. Waters are rising.

And we do not even speak of it. Why?
Because admitting the facts means admitting crimes of epic proportions by living our daily lives. Because counting the losses means being overpowered by grief. Because allowing the scale of the crisis means facing the fear of swiftly impending disaster and the fact that our entire system must change.
But now is not the time to ignore science in order to save our feelings. It is time to be terrified, enraged, heartbroken, grief-stricken, radical.

It is time to act.
Facebook Twitter 9.22pm GMT 21:22
Here’s an excerpt from A manifesto for tackling the climate change crisis , by UK Student Climate Network:
We’re young, we’re students and we’re calling for change. Our movement started in February when tens of thousands of young people took to the streets in towns and cities around Britain, in an unprecedented emergence of a youth climate justice movement.
We’ve joined a movement that’s spreading rapidly across the world, catalysed by the actions of one individual in taking a stand in August last year.

Greta Thunberg may have been the spark, but we’re the wildfire and we’re fuelled by the necessity for action.

The climate is in crisis. We will be facing ecological catastrophe and climate breakdown in the very near future if those in power don’t act urgently and radically to change our trajectory. Scientists have been giving increasingly dire warnings about the state of our planet for years, with the urgency and severity of their message escalating in recent times. It’s abundantly clear: change is needed, and it’s needed now!
A manifesto for tackling the climate change crisis | UK Student Climate Network Read more Facebook Twitter 9.

09pm GMT 21:09
Mexico Greenpeace highlights demonstrators in Mexico here, one of whom carries a signs that reads: “Rebellion or extinction”.
Greenpeace (@Greenpeace) ¡Los jóvenes mexicanos exigimos acción climática! ¡Si no cambiamos, no respiramos! @GobCDMX #CambioClimático #FridaysForFurture pic.

twitter.com/16Z51AItwc
March 15, 2019
Students pose in front of Metropolitan Cathedral at the main square Zocalo, before they take part in a march demanding action on climate change, in Mexico City, Mexico. Photograph: Henry Romero/Reuters Facebook Twitter 9.07pm GMT 21:07
A brief look back at the marchers in Chicago, just a few hours ago.
Illinois Sierra Club (@SierraClubIL) Hundreds of young ppl out in Chicago today demanding climate justice! #ClimateStrike #climatestrikechicago #twill pic.twitter.

com/Z7X1g3yHuC
March 15, 2019 Illinois Sierra Club (@SierraClubIL) Hundreds of young ppl out in Chicago today demanding climate justice! #ClimateStrike #climatestrikechicago #twill pic.twitter.com/Z7X1g3yHuC
March 15, 2019 Facebook Twitter 8.53pm GMT 20:53
Alexandria Villsenor, 13, has spent every Friday since December wrapped in a coat outside the United Nations headquarters in New York City, protesting inaction on climate change.
She, Isra Hirsi of Minnesota (US Representative Ilhan Omar’s daughter) and Haven Coleman from Colorado organized the US Youth Climate Strike .
The Davis, California-native said, when she last met Guardian US environment reporter Oliver Milman, she’d been outside for so long (four hours), “I lost circulation in my toes for the first time.


My generation knows that climate change will be the biggest problem we’ll have to face,” Villasenor said. “It’s upsetting that my generation has to push these leaders to take action.

We aren’t going to stop striking until some more laws are passed.”
Alexandria skips school on Friday morning to strike in front of the UN, with signs reading: “School Strike 4 Climate” and “Cop24 Failed Us.” Alexandria Villasenor is a 13-year-old climate activist who has been striking in front of the UN building for nine weeks, and, along with Greta Thunberg and fellow young activists around the world, is organizing a global school strike for climate on March 15. Photograph: The Washington Post/Getty Images ‘We won’t stop striking’: the New York 13 year-old taking a stand over climate change Read more Facebook Twitter 8.

32pm GMT 20:32
From the 16-year-old who inspired these marches, and now a Nobel Prize nominee, Greta Thunberg :
Greta Thunberg (@GretaThunberg) According to https://t.co/pzYB6XuR6u we have already passed way over one million students on school strike today.
Over 2000 places in 125 countries on all continents.
And we have only just started! #fridaysforfuture #schoolstrike4climate
(picture from Prague, Czech Republic) pic.twitter.

com/lvStJg3EEU
March 15, 2019 Greta Thunberg: how her school strike went global – podcast Read more Facebook Twitter 8.26pm GMT 20:26
In California, students are in the streets in San Francisco and Los Angeles.
San Francisco Chronicle (@sfchronicle) Student protesters flood Union Square in San Francisco during a #climatechange inaction march. 🎥: @SteveRubeSF pic.

twitter.com/AC0X5VZBpJ
March 15, 2019 Students in LA may have the best chant of the day with this scorcher:
“What do we want?”
“Science!”
“When do we want it?”
“After peer review!”
Javier Panzar 🦅 (@jpanzar) “What do we want? Science! When do we want it? AFTER PEER REVIEW”.

#climatestrikeLa pic.twitter.com/cuIbfJLFwI
March 15, 2019 Updated at 8.28pm GMT
Facebook Twitter 8.02pm GMT 20:02
Another one of the students who shared with us why the the student strikes are important is Abigail Leedy, 17, of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania .

Scores of young people, including students staging a walkout, attend the Philly Youth Climate Strike in Love Park in solidarity with dozens of marches around the world, March 15, 2019. Their concerns include unchecked pollution and other environmental risks they feel are not being addressed by adults in government. Photograph: Michael Candelori/REX/Shutterstock
I’m striking Friday because I live in Philadelphia, a city I love with my whole heart.

Philadelphia is one of the most polluted major cities in the United States. At least 50% of our air pollution comes from fossil fuel projects around the city, most of which are located in low-income communities of color.
More than 156,000 people, or 10% of our city, will be displaced by sea level rise if we don’t make drastic changes to our carbon emissions. Already, students in Philadelphia missed five days of school in this fall due to excessive heat..

.
I am terrified about what will happen to the city I love if officials don’t take action that rises to the challenge of the climate crisis. I’m scared for myself and for the 17-year-old’s just like me who will grow up in an increasingly unlivable world, start families in neighborhoods where there is no clean air to breathe, about the lives that will be lost to climate fueled disasters like the fires in California or hurricanes in Puerto Rico or, soon enough, floods in Philadelphia.
I’m striking because what seems so terribly clear to me- that lives have already been lost to the climate crisis, that if we do not take action now there will be an unfathomable human cost- seems to be lost on my elected officials.
My self-described “progressive” representative, Dwight Evans, refuses to co-sponsor the Green New Deal resolution, the only solution that rises to the scale of the crisis. Nancy Pelosi has derided it as a “Green Dream” and Senator Dianne Feinstein is on video claiming she won’t support it just because she doesn’t think it will get enough support in the Republican-controlled senate.
I’m striking because I feel like I have run out of ways to communicate to my elected officials; that climate inaction is violence; and that my life, air and future, and those of every other 17-year-old – every young person – is on the line.
Facebook Twitter 7.

49pm GMT 19:49
Shout out to the snowy American midwest, where kids came out in Traverse City, Michigan and St.

Paul, Minnesota .
Eric Holthaus (@EricHolthaus) Sign: “So bad even the introverts are here!”
Victor, 15, St Paul, Minnesota #climatestrike #FridaysForFuture pic.twitter.com/EsWukqMHIn
March 15, 2019 Facebook Twitter 7.

48pm GMT 19:48
Canada Marches are also taking place across Canada, including in…
Quebec City
Alice-Anne Simard (@AliceAnneSimard) Live from Quebec City, Canada #climatestrike #FridaysForFuture #schoolstrike4climate #GretaThunberg #GrevePourLeClimat #manifestation #Fridays4Future #schoolstrike4climate @GretaThunberg @ExtinctionR @Pourlepacte pic.twitter.com/DCQOTC6cBa
March 15, 2019 Edmonton
350 Canada (@350Canada) Hundreds of students out in Edmonton for #shoolstrikes4climate
“We’re here today to call upon all levels of our gov for a just transition to 100% renewable energy by 2030 that protects workers & upholds Indigenous rights” Claire, Edmonton Grade 10 student #YouthClimateStrike pic.twitter.com/f9jGKyELMb
March 15, 2019 And in Montreal
MTL Blog (@mtlblog) Students have taken over the streets of Montreal! #montreal #canada https://t.co/BHF88NxrQ5 pic.twitter.com/HqZRakWsbY
March 15, 2019 Facebook Twitter 7.

30pm GMT 19:30
Chile Hundreds now look to be on the streets in Santiago, Chile.
Clara Salina (@clara_salina) #climatestrikes #FridaysForFuture #Santiago #Chile so proud of you! pic.twitter.com/VqX2NgcP5S
March 15, 2019
Thousands take part in a protest called by the “Fridays For Future” movement on a global day of student protests aiming to spark world leaders into action on climate change in Santiago, Chile, on March 15, 2019. Photograph: Martin Bernetti/AFP/Getty Images
CHILE-CLIMATE-YOUTH-PROTEST
A demonstrators holds a placard during a protest called by the “Fridays For Future” movement on a global day of student protests aiming to spark world leaders into action on climate change in Santiago, Chile, on March 15, 2019. Photograph: Martin Bernetti/AFP/Getty Images
An activist shows her belly, painted with the words, “to protect from our own destruction” during a protest called by the “Fridays For Future” movement on a global day of student protests aiming to spark world leaders into action on climate change on March 15, 2019 in Santiago, Chile.

Photograph: Martin Bernetti/AFP/Getty Images Facebook Twitter 1 of 14 Newest Newer Older Oldest Topics Climate change Greenhouse gas emissions Fossil fuels Energy (Australia news) Energy (Environment) Schools Australian education.

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Coca-Cola reveals how much plastic it uses – BBC News

Image copyright Getty Images For the first time, Coca-Cola has revealed it used three million tonnes of plastic packaging in one year. It’s part of a report by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation which is pushing for companies and governments to do more to tackle plastic pollution. In total, 150 companies are pledging to reduce their…

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Coca-Cola reveals how much plastic it uses – BBC News

imageImage copyright Getty Images For the first time, Coca-Cola has revealed it used three million tonnes of plastic packaging in one year.
It’s part of a report by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation which is pushing for companies and governments to do more to tackle plastic pollution.
In total, 150 companies are pledging to reduce their plastic usage as part of the campaign.
But some companies including Pepsi, L’Oreal and H&M haven’t said how much plastic they use.
Coca-Cola used 3 million tonnes of plastic in 2017 It’s hard to visualise what three million tonnes looks like.

But everyone can picture a blue whale.
Now picture 15,000 of them.

That’s roughly three million tonnes.
In 2018, the company announced a pledge to recycle a used bottle or can for each one the company sells by 2030.
Coca-Cola markets 500 brands of fizzy drink, juices and water and says it will also work towards making all of its packaging recyclable worldwide.
Image copyright Getty Images Many companies have been committing to being more green after concerns about plastic waste were highlighted in shows such as the BBC’s Blue Planet 2, narrated by Sir David Attenborough.
In this report, 31 companies – including Mars, Nestlé and Danone – reveal how much plastic packaging they create in a year.
Nestle: 1.7m tonnes.

Colgate: 287,008 tonnes in 2018. Unilever: 610,000 tonnes. Burberry: 200 tonnes of plastic in a year. Companies are trying to be more open about how much plastic they use – and how much waste they create.
In February 2019, Nestle got rid of plastic straws from its products and is using paper ones instead.
Burberry was criticised in 2018, when it said it destroyed unsold clothes , accessories and perfume worth £28.6m to protect its brand.

It’s now stopped the practice.
150 companies have signed up to be part of The Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s commitment to reduce plastic pollution.
Rubbish washed up on a beach in Bali Follow Newsbeat on Instagram , Facebook and Twitter .

Listen to Newsbeat live at 12:45 and 17:45 every weekday on BBC Radio 1 and 1Xtra – if you miss us you can listen back here ..

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