Senin, 28 November 2016

Australia's Mining-Heavy State Looks Elsewhere for Growth

Australia's biggest resources state has long relied on China's hearty appetite for raw materials for its wealth but with growth in its main trading partner slowing Western Australia is trying to cultivate other trading partners such as Indonesia. The state's top political leader and premier, Colin Barnett, this week visited Indonesia to promote everything from agriculture and tourism to overseas education and real estate. The state recorded its first budget deficit in 15 years last year and fiscal 2016 could be worse as royalties from mining and oil and gas tied to international prices decline.

It's been more than two years since the state saw its AAA credit rating from Standard & Poor's stripped to AA+. In Indonesia, the state has long been a supplier of millions of tonnes of wheat annually and has even devised a noodle specific to local tastes. No industry more than iron ore rode the double-digit wave of growth that gripped China in the last decade and no place mines more of the steel-making raw material than Western Australia. The state reaped hundreds of millions of dollars in royalties each year as annual production surpassed a half-billion tonnes. China's still buying, but with so much iron ore around and industrial growth contracting each quarter, prices are down 75 percent from 2011 peaks, translating into much lower royalties.

Now, China has come back to slower growth rates. I agreed with what Barnett said that he had spent most of his time as premier dealing on that relationship with China and Japan, because in the last decade iron ore production would have doubled and liquefied natural gas production would have trebled. I think it is good for him to put more of his time into broadening and diversifying the economy

Mediterranean swordfish on the verge of collapse: WWF raises the alarm

Countries that are part of the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas or usually I shorten it to ICCAT, including the United States and also Japan the European Union, will decide from 14 to 21 November on management schemes for key species such as Mediterranean swordfish, bluefin tuna, and sharks. WWF is seriously concerned about the current rate of depletion of swordfish and calls for actions to prevent the stock collapse witnessed for the Mediterranean bluefin tuna in the recent past.    

The future of the Mediterranean swordfish is seriously at risk. Mediterranean swordfish is a highly valuable species for many countries in the Mediterranean and the EU fleet accounts for 75 percent of the total catch, with Italy, Spain and Greece reporting the largest catches. WWF calls on the European Commission and key EU fishing nations to significantly reduce the amount of swordfish caught to allow the stock to recover. WWF is also concerned about the fate of sharks, especially the blue and shortfin mako that are vulnerable to overfishing. WWF urges ICCAT governments to establish long-term management plans including setting precautionary catch limits to ensure these iconic species stay in our seas. ICCAT should also agree on a no-shark-finning policy as well as improving compliance to existing bans that oblige fishermen to land sharks with their fin attached.

It is critical for ICCAT to implement an ambitious recovery plan for the Mediterranean swordfish to bring the stock back to a sustainable level. This will ensure the survival of large Mediterranean fisheries communities whose livelihood and prosperity depend on it. I think too many juveniles are caught before they can reproduce and secure the survival of the species also affect the future.

Minggu, 27 November 2016

Rain Delays Australia Wheat Harvest, Could Dampen Exports

Rain is delaying the wheat harvest in parts of Australia, threatening to disrupt deliveries from the world's No.4 exporter of the grain to key markets such as India and Indonesia. Expecting a near-record crop of close to 30 million tonnes, exporters had sold new-crop wheat for shipment in November and December, but rains in the nation's eastern crop-belt, as well as frost in parts of the western growing region, have prevented farmers from gathering wheat on time.

The harvest has been running three weeks behind schedule in Western Australia, the nation's largest wheat exporting state, according to analysts and traders. On the east coast, it is lagging by at least two weeks. There is a danger of late November and early December shipments getting delayed
Australia is a leading wheat supplier to some of Asia's biggest markets, including the world's second-largest importer Indonesia. India, typically self-sufficient in wheat, has been relying heavily on Australia for supplies this year after local crops were hit by two years of adverse weather.
Frost damage across Western Australia, the country's largest wheat-producing state, has destroyed more than 15 percent of the total grain crop.I wish that any delays would not be significant.

Minggu, 20 November 2016

Disowned by Family, Women Rescued From Indian Brothels Turn to Counselling

The woman, who declined to be identified, is one of thousands who are trafficked from in and around Kadiri town in Andhra Pradesh's Anantapur district to the brothels of Mumbai, New Delhi and Pune every year.
Agents and gangs prey on the poverty of thousands of women and girls in rural areas, promising them a good job and decent income in other cities before selling them into the sex trade, activists say.
Many women are rescued or escape – only to return home and face a new struggle to overcome their past and deal with the present. Not only are the women very pretty, they are also very poor, making them easy targets for agents.

A recent government survey identified Kadiri, where Chittoor, Kadappa and Anantapur districts meet, as a hot spot for human trafficking in Andhra Pradesh, the coastal state which is home to India's space research center.  Between April 2015 and March 2016, more than 600 women sought help at the centers, many of them victims of trafficking, others of domestic abuse. Byalla, a famous organization there, also sends out teams to 124 villages identified in 2004 as having high rates of migration. They go looking for trafficked victims and also those on the verge of migrating. The Gandlapenta center also offers vocational training based on the belief that if women are taught a skill, which they can earn a living from, they will be less likely to fall victim to traffickers. Many of the women who go to Byalla are directed to the vocational center, where they are trained to make sanitary pads, incense sticks, notebooks and taught tailoring. Some stay on after their training and earn a monthly salary to run their homes.

I think this situation is bit hard for women there in India. However, I relieved there are some organizations care about women, such as Byalla and Gandlapenta. I wish the government can resolve this problem as soon as possible by create some strict rules and educate people there.

Sabtu, 19 November 2016

Surge in seizures of captive-bred tigers strengthens call for Asia to close all tiger farms

Viet Nam has also become an increasingly significant hub for tiger trafficking and home to a growing number of tiger farms – close to 40 per cent of the country’s reported seizures came from captive facilities. Its role in the illegal tiger trade was highlighted by the Wildlife Justice Commission at its public hearing this week in The Hague. Overall, there are estimated to be more than 7,000 tigers in farms in Asia, mostly in China, Laos, Thailand and Viet Nam.

With commercial tiger breeding in Asia threatening the future of the world’s remaining wild tigers, governments must announce concrete steps to close all the continent’s tiger farms within the next three years at the international conference on illegal wildlife trade starting tomorrow in Viet Nam.

I think all governments should support an Indian government proposal to create a regional stripe pattern database that can compare images of seized tiger skins with camera trap photos of wild tigers and photos of captive tigers; compile sets of DNA markers from both wild and captive tiger populations within their country; and launch focused, evidence-based behavioural change programmes to reduce demand for tiger parts and products. Along with announcing plans to close all tiger farms, Asian governments can also take a series of immediate, concrete steps to ensure captive-bred tigers do not enter the illegal trade chain before the closures take effect.

Jumat, 18 November 2016

Australia Set to Boost Imports of Diesel to Power Coal Mines

Prices for coal have more than doubled this year after China moved to buy more overseas, with miners in top producers such as Australia pushing to meet demand. Australian imports of diesel are set to grow as miners in the country rev up generators used to power pit operations following a resurgence in coal markets.

A second trader added that the increased Australian demand would likely result in about one additional medium-range diesel cargo every two months, or about 300,000 barrels. Australia imported 1,457 megaliters, or about 9.2 million barrels, of diesel in August. The country imported a total of 11,601 megaliters from January to August in 2016, up from 10,872.90 megaliters over the same period last year.

I think importing diesel demand in retail is alsogood because local car manufacturers are shutting down and the cars are importing are all mainly diesel. Motorists are switching from locally made, big passenger cars to overseas-made small cars and sports utility vehicles which typically use diesel. This will increase their economy statistics and help to develop their country.

New report shows the critical situation of water in Doñana

The health of Spain's Doñana National Park is fully dependant on water but the aquifer that feeds Doñana’s marshes is drying up at an alarming speed. Hundreds of thousands of birds that are flying from Europe to spend the winter in Spain's Doñana National Park will find the marshes almost empty of water. Its deterioration is affecting rivers, marshes, lagoons, as well as the plants and animals that make Doñana unique.

Doñana’s aquifer would need between 30 and 60 years to recover completely from the current overexploitation. That would first require strong measures to be taken to end illegal and unsustainable water use, the report warns. The Spanish government admits in official reports that the huge underground water deposit that feeds the marshes has suffered a dramatic decline since the 1970s. Right now, water governance around Doñana is so weak that the amount of water extracted each year from the aquifer is unknown.
One of the natural features that makes Doñana unique in Europe is temporary lagoons, which are drying up at an appalling rate. As a result, 40 per cent of the species of dragonflies that lived in Doñana, associated to those lagoons, have been lost. The report published by WWF is one of the most thorough scientific analyses ever made about the state of water in Doñana, and the effects that the lack of this precious resource is having on ecosystems. I think the government know what they should do to save this.