Tag: Australia

As bushfires ravage Australia, activists target Australian missions & Siemens globally to highlight climate emergency

Climate-2 final
Photo- Supplied.

By SAT News Desk

January 16th, 2020 – As Australia suffers devastating bushfires, Extinction Rebellion (XR) climate activists in over 35 countries are holding solidarity actions with Extinction Rebellion Australia’s Bushfire Rebellion outside Australian embassies and consulates for the second week in a row. Countries, including Nigeria, Zambia, Netherlands, Argentina, Uganda and Spain. Extinction Rebellion India, meanwhile, has been warned by local police not to protest.

The borderless, nonviolent rebellion comes in response to the Australian government’s climate inaction and exacerbation of the climate crisis which has led to the catastrophic bushfire crisis.

The catastrophic mega blaze has already led to what scientists are describing as an ecosystem and species apocalypse in Australia. Some estimates state that up to 700 animal species have had their populations decimated – with many species likely to be pushed to extinction including the Long-footed potaroo, the Greater glider, the Kangaroo Island dunnart, and the Black-tailed dusky antechinus, being obliterated from the face of the Earth.

“It would seem the only people willing to dismiss the scientific correlation between the bushfire crisis and the climate crisis are those massaged by the fossil fuel industry in the Australian government and those who believe the propaganda of fossil fuel-interested media,” said Extinction Rebellion Sydney spokesperson Larissa Payne.

While we are on the verge of triggering a climatic point of no return, German company Siemens agreed to participate in the development of the world’s largest coal mine. Siemens will supply the signage technology for the railway line of the Carmichael coal mine in Galilee Basin, Australia, quite literally signaling the way to the destruction of life on the Planet.

“Instead of demonstrating climate leadership and turning its back on one of the many culprits, it chooses to of quite literally fuel fires around the world, despite warnings from several environmental groups, ongoing protests, and over 60 companies pulling out of the project. Siemens undoubtedly places profit over the planet,” explains XR Germany spokesperson Annemarie Botski.

Meanwhile, companies from around the world display similar callousness for life on Earth, even as the island continent’s species go extinct, “In the same line, the Adani business group has obtained approvals for extracting coal from the Carmichael coal mines in Australia. Fighting to saving our planet has rightly turned global because of the impact of forest fires in Brazil, floods in Indonesia or fires in Australia are already being felt all across our Earth. Such tragedies will only increase in intensity and in terms of numbers,” says Extinction Rebellion India’s Jeevesh Gupta.

“It is believed several animal and plant species have been rendered extinct in the past few weeks. An estimated over half a billion animals have died in this disaster. Much of the severity of conditions in the southern parts of Australia can be attributed to massive amounts of land clearing in the past century, leading to loss of rainfall, and no consultation or respect by governments of the original Australians’ intact knowledge of caring for and maintaining the land,” laments Australian First Nation spiritual leader Nick Tree.

The fires sweeping the country have also pumped out an estimated 400 million metric tonnes of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, further fueling climate change that has already intensified Australia’s devastating fires. This is equivalent to the total combined annual emissions of 116 low-emitting countries and nine times the amount of carbon produced during California’s record-setting 2018 fire season.

“The climate crisis cares nothing for borders. We need coordinated, international action to combat this mess. The Bushfire Rebellion is only the beginning. Two-thirds of Australians want the government to declare a climate emergency and mobilize at the World-war scale. We are living through the tipping point that the scientists have been warning us about – anything less than an emergency response condemns out children to an unlivable future,” concludes XR Australia spokesperson Jane Morton

Actions will be held on the 16th and 17th January as a continuation of actions on the 10th of January in the following countries:

Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Czech Republic, Chile, Denmark, Finland, France, Gambia, Germany – Berlin, Hamburg, Hungary, India, Indonesia – Bali, Italy, Japan, Nigeria,
Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand – Auckland, Christchurch, Wellington, Poland, Portugal,
Scotland, Spain – Asturias, Barcelona, Madrid, Malaga, Murcia, South Africa, Sweden,
Tunisia, Uganda, United Kingdom – Bristol, London, Lambeth, United States – Houston, Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, Washington DC. and Zambia.

Source of information & photos: Extinction Rebellion, Australia.

Ten volunteers from the ‘Officer Sikh Gurudwara’ honoured with the 2019 Premier’s Volunteer Champions Awards

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Awardees and their families at the Government House. Photo: Supplied.

By SAT News Desk

MELBOURNE, 1 December: Ten volunteers from the Sikh temple in Officer are now proud Volunteer Champions. These Volunteer Champions from the Siri Guru Nanak Darbar (SGND)- the Officer Sikh Gurudwara, Officer are among the 57 recipients of the 2019 Premier’s Volunteer Champions Awards who were honoured at Government House on 1 December 2019 for their unwavering passion, commitment and dedication to serve. The awards were presented by the Governor of Victoria, The Honourable Linda Dessau AC at the Government House.

While presenting the award, the group received a warm and commending mention which says, “Going beyond their mandate of ‘a place of worship’, the Officer Sikh temple has undertaken several social cohesion activities that have created bridges of trust between multi-cultural communities. This group has showcased how sharing and caring can win hearts”.

The recipients were Madhu Bhatia, Navpreet Dhanoa, Ramandeep Kang, Harjinder Kaur, Harjit (Ravneet) Kaur, Brijai Parikh, Randeep Saini, Avtar Singh, Manjinder Singh, and Ramneet Kaur Walia.

The ‘Officer Sikh Gurudwara’ has been active through its volunteers this year by providing free meals to BlazeAid volunteers, collecting donations for Bunyip bushfire relief and contributing hay to the Need for Feed movement, tree plantation, participating in different local and state functions, organising prayers for families affected by bushfires, Christchurch attacks and Sri Lankan church attacks, providing food donations to 4Cs and Baptist Church among others.

A media release from the Officer Sikh temple says, “To weave unconditional love in the very foundation of all the activities. Noteworthy is that SGND does not have any formal committee. It is run by a group of volunteers who work in diverse professions Most of these volunteers have young families and still manage to dedicate a significant amount of their after-work hours to help with every day running.”

The ‘Officer Sikh Gurudwara’ is situated at 33 Officer Road, Officer, Victoria 3809. And can be contacted at 0447028688 or info@sgnd.com.au. Website is – www.sgnd.com.au

Improving social inclusion could generate $12.7 b annual boost to Australian economy, says the Deloitte Access Economics report, commissioned by the SBS

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By SAT News Desk

MELBOURNE, 28 August: Improving social inclusion in Australia has the potential to unlock a $12.7 billion economic dividend annually, and play a significant role in Australia’s future economic growth and prosperity, a report by Deloitte Access Economics, commissioned by SBS, has found.

Published today, The Economic Benefits of Improving Social Inclusion quantifies, for the first time in this way, the potential lift to Australia’s economy that could be driven by improved employment and health outcomes, increased workplace productivity, and reduced costs of social services, as a result of greater social inclusion.

John O’Mahony, Partner, Deloitte Access Economics, said: “Australia has experienced almost three decades of economic growth as a nation, and our economic success has helped sustain growth in living standards. Yet productivity growth has been weaker since 2004 and lifting it will be central to improving future living standards and ensuring all Australians benefit from our prosperity.

“Policies to drive economic growth often focus on financial and quantifiable aspects of markets and regulation, but there are also important social drivers. Improving social inclusion is a source of economic strength and higher living standards for all Australians. Having an inclusive society not only avoids the costs incurred when people are excluded but harnesses our diversity, providing fuel for creativity and innovation in our economy.”

Through new quantitative modeling, data, and analysis, Deloitte Access Economics has identified five key dimensions through which social inclusion can yield economic benefits:

• Increased productivity in the workplace: Business benefits from social inclusion in a number of ways: diversity can be a source of creativity and innovation, lifting productivity; social inclusion can also lift profitability and help target market segments. Increasing the share of women in senior leadership was estimated to increase Australia’s GDP by $5 billion through more creative, innovative and inclusive workplaces.
• Improved employment outcomes: Greater social inclusion means people are less likely to experience discrimination-based adversity, and less likely to experience discrimination in the first place, increasing their capacity to seek employment or gain longer working hours and contribute to the economy as a whole. Labour market benefits from improving social inclusion among migrant communities in Australia is estimated to yield economic and social benefits worth $1.2 billion a year.
• Improvement in mental and physical health: Social inclusion can counteract isolation and increase community participation, which helps to alleviate health problems, especially mental health issues such as anxiety and depression. The impact of social inclusion in improving health outcomes for migrant communities alone is estimated to improve well-being by $6.5 billion a year.
• Reduced cost of social services: Social inclusion reduces the cost of social services by easing pressure on the public health system and reducing the need for income and housing support payments.
• Inclusive growth: By lifting wages and workforce participation in geographical areas of socioeconomic disadvantage, the benefits of economic growth can be shared more evenly across all Australian communities.

James Taylor, SBS Managing Director, commented on the report: “Creativity, tenacity, vision and leadership – these are all critical drivers of innovation. These attributes are not unique to any one community, and they are not determined by where you were born, your family ancestry, the language you speak, your gender, sexual orientation or faith.

“Australia’s reputation as a successful and inclusive society can only benefit from further embracing difference in our teams, workplaces, and in our community. This report demonstrates that when we are all empowered and access to opportunity is more evenly shared, so too are the dividends for all.”

Dr Bulent Hass Dellal AO, SBS Chair, added: “Australia’s rich cultural diversity is one of our country’s greatest strengths. We are proudly an inclusive society but as this report shows there are opportunities from fostering greater inclusion which all Australians can benefit from in a tangible way. As Australia becomes increasingly diverse, the importance of fostering social inclusion will continue to grow. This is as important for ensuring cohesive communities as it is for Australia’s economic prosperity and makes the role that SBS has played for more than 40 years in contributing to social inclusion, more relevant and important today than ever before.

“There is power, potential, and a strong economic imperative in better understanding, respecting and celebrating our differences. This is central to all that SBS does, as a dedicated multicultural and Indigenous broadcaster delivering content and services that contribute to a more inclusive society.”

The quantitative analysis in the report largely focuses on the benefits of social inclusion for culturally and linguistically diverse communities, specifically migrant communities, but recognizes that there are many other groups that contribute to Australia’s diversity and for whom improving social inclusion is likely to result in additional economic benefits for Australia.

The report is available to download from www2.deloitte.com/au/benefits-improving-social-inclusion.

International student numbers soar in Victoria

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Photo: Melbourne University

By SAT News Desk

MELBOURNE, 1 August: Victoria’s international education sector has set records for enrolments and economic impact, cementing the
sector’s status as a multi-billion-dollar export earner.

New figures show international students from 170 countries accounted for 281,000 enrolments last year, up 11.4
per cent, supporting almost 79,000 Victorian jobs and generating $11.8 billion in export revenue.
Revenue for Victoria has increased by 89 per cent since 2014, making international education the state’s largest
export category, ahead of tourism ($5.4 billion) and wool ($2.1 billion).

The total number of international students was 227,000, with some enrolled in multiple courses.
The top five countries for onshore students were China (88,401), India (50,463), Malaysia (16,643), Vietnam
(12,763) and Sri Lanka (9,541). The most popular fields of study were management and commerce (32 per cent),
arts and humanities (21 per cent), IT (10 per cent) and foundation studies (10 per cent).

Victoria is a premium higher education and research destination, with higher education responsible for half of all
international student enrolments. Melbourne is Australia’s top student city as ranked by the QS Best Student
Cities 2019 report, where it was also ranked third best student city in the world.
That high standing is due to the quality student experience that Victoria offers, enhanced by the Andrews Labor
Government’s nation-leading investment in student wellbeing services.

Today, the Labor Government announced almost $1 million in International Student Welfare Program grants,
supporting 27 projects.

Since 2014, the Government has committed $4 million to 104 projects that protect and promote international
student wellbeing in areas including sport, work rights, accommodation, legal services and mental health.
The Government also operates the Study Melbourne Student Centre, a central hub on Hardware Lane where
students have access to a broad range of free services, face-to-face case management and professional
development programs. The centre has helped more than 6,300 students since September 2018.

Bleeding blue at the MCG as India take ODI series 2-1

By SAT sportsdesk

Melbourne: The MCG was bathing in a sea of blue on friday as India took their winning form into the 3rd and final one day international of the 2018/19 tour of Australia. At the innings break, Australia were 230 all out, with Yuzvendra Chahal starring for India to take 6 wickets for 42 runs in his 10 overs.

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Top scorer for Australia was  Peter Handscomb with 58 runs off 63 balls. Usman Khawaja 34 and Shawn Marsh 39 made valuable contributions but could not covert their innings into a big one. With 230 runs being a below par score, Australia were hoping for their new pace factory Richadson, Stanlake and Siddle to make early inroads into the strong India batting lineup.  Like the first ODI they were hoping to take out top order Dhawan, Rohit and Kohli cheaply to put pressure on the Indian middle order. Rohit and Kohli are in fine form after making centuries in the first and second ODIs.

Siddle did take Rohit Sharma’s wicket early on and Dhawan got out to Stonis in the 16th over. Dhoni was promoted to number 4 in the absence of regular #4 Raidu and gave a chance to Stoinis on his first ball but Maxwell could not hang on. Earlier, Kohli was also dropped on 10 by Peter Handscomb at slip. There were also two close run out chances that the Aussies missed. Without scoreboard pressure, Finch had no choice but to bring in the field. The experience of Kohli and Dhoni, with more than 20000 international runs between them, was expected to take India through to an easy win. However, with Dhoni playing slow and farming the strike, Kohli’s rhythm was disrupted and he nicked one to the keeper in frustration. Out came young Jhadhav and formed an important partnership with Dhoni to get the ask to 59 runs off 53 balls. Then something in Dhoni’s brain clicked to play a maiden off Zampa’s last over and the ask suddenly became 50 off 33 balls ,much to the pleasure of the fox sports commentators who called it game on for Australia. Dhoni (87 not out) had the last laugh by increasing the scoring rate with Jadhav (61 not out) to complete another successful chase and win the series. The old master showed how its done in style – keep wickets in hand and take the chase deep into the final overs of the game. India ended their most successful tour on Australian soil winning the test series 2-1 and now the ODI series 2-1

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Indian fans once again attended the MCG in big numbers giving a feeling of an India home game at the Eden Gardens. The Australia cricket fans seem to taken to the fast pace of the Big Bash and Cricket Australia will have to review the scheduling to keep the international games relevant in their minds. It would have been great to see the MCG full if the fans of both teams attended in force. Friday being a working day, the Australian Open along with the absence of run machines Stephen Smith & David Warner would have also played a part.