Blaine Gibson chartered a boat and organized a trip over the weekend on the coast of Mozambique. The owner of the boat and Gibson found the plane part washed ashore on a sandbar.

“It never occurred to me that I would find something like this here. It’s almost like a dream. I don’t know if it’s from 370 or another plane. Whatever it is, even if it’s not from 370, it raises awareness that people need to look for stuff on beaches,” said Gibson, who has been involved in the search for MH370 as a private citizen.



Australia’s regional leaders favor abandoning monarchy


Others are much more articulate about their support, though. South Australian Premier Jay Weatherill said it would be “the ultimate act of respect” on the queen’s part if she oversaw the transfer.

“She could do it in the elegant and expert way in which she has handled her relationship as head of Australia. I mean if you think about it, what are we waiting for? Are we waiting for her to die? I would have thought that it’s much more respectful to have her supervise this transition,” he told the ABC.

The regional leaders are in tune with the country’s federal leadership. Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull is a known supporter of the republic, pushing the cause in a failed 1999 referendum.

However, he has recently been somewhat less fierce about the issue.

“My own view…is that the next occasion for the republic referendum to come up is going to be after the end of the queen’s reign,” Turnbull said last year.

Australian court’s mosque ruling draws mixed reactions

Anti-Islam protesters and left-wing protesters squared off in Bendigo in October over the planned mosque [Baris Ataymen/Reuters]

Proponents of a mosque planned for a small rural Australian city have hailed a court’s decision to refuse an appeal against the development, saying it is a win for multiculturalism.

A small, yet vocal group of opponents, however, say they will take their fight against the construction of the mosque all the way to Australia’s High Court.

The Victorian state Court of Appeal on Wednesday ruled against two residents in Bendigo, who argued the development of the mosque would have an adverse “social effect” on the community.

Ozone hole over Antarctica expands to near-record levels, now four times size of Australia

6899744-3x2-340x227 The hole in the ozone layer above Antarctica has been carefully monitored for over 30 years.

According to atmospheric scientist Professor David Karoly from the University of Melbourne, its size fluctuates greatly when it emerges each spring.

“Each springtime over the last now nearly 35 years, there’s been a depletion of stratospheric ozone over Antarctica primarily due to two really important factors,” he said.

“It’s the increase in ozone-depleting chemicals in the atmosphere and a very special cold conditions that occur in winter and spring over Antarctica which provide a special, if you like, catalytic ozone destruction vessel that allows the ozone to be rapidly deployed by the higher concentrations of chlorofluorocarbons — ozone-depleting chemicals that have occurred in the stratosphere due to human activity.”

The UN’s weather and climate agency said this year’s seasonal ozone hole peaked on October 2, covering an area over Antarctica of 28.2 million square kilometres — close to four times the size of Australia or the size of Russia and Canada combined.

The CSIRO’s Paul Krummel said it was a big difference compared to last year, when the seasonal ozone hole was one of the smallest on record.


ozone-layer Scientists from the UN said the increase was due to colder-than-usual temperatures, rather than any extra damage being done to the Earth’s protective layer.

But that could still mean extra UV radiation and the risk of more people getting sunburnt in Australia’s southern states this summer.

The hole in the ozone layer above Antarctica has been carefully monitored for over 30 years.

According to atmospheric scientist Professor David Karoly from the University of Melbourne, its size fluctuates greatly when it emerges each spring.


australia-indonesia-smugglers The organisation has released a report in which it details evidence of Australian Navy and Border Force officials intercepting a people smuggling boat and paying the crew to turn around.

It recommends a royal commission into the alleged payments, as well as an investigation into a second incident where payments were also alleged to have been made.

Senior ministers have previously expressly denied the involvement of Border Force and Defence Force officials in any payments to people smugglers, but that denial has never been extended to intelligence officials.


australian-gun-confiscation And yet restrictive laws placed on the ownership of firearms did not prevent a shooting on Friday outside the New South Wales state police headquarters in western Sydney, Australia.

Prime Minister John Howard’s 1996 “reform” was not designed to prevent mass murder. It was enacted to confiscated firearms.

Since the passage of the law there has been a number of mass murders in the country. Following the Port Arthur massacre which prompted the government to confiscate firearms from law-abiding citizens, the following incidents occurred:

  • 12 people where killed by three serial murderers in Snowtown.
  • An arsonist murdered 15 backpackers in Childers, Queensland.
  • A student went on a shooting spree killing two in Melbourne.
  • An arson attack killed 10 in Churchill, Victoria.
  • A man beat to death five people of the Lin family in North Epping, New South Wales.
  • 11 people were burned to death by a nurse in Sydney.
  • A man shot to death his wife and three children in Lockhart, South Wales.
  • A woman in Cairns, Queensland stabbed to death eight children.

Australia as China’s Canary Means World Watching RBA Heartbeat

-1x-1 The Reserve Bank of Australia manages the developed world’s most exposed economy to China and until now signaled stock market volatility there wouldn’t hurt Chinese consumption. While traders and economists predict Governor Glenn Stevens will keepinterest rates unchanged at a record-low 2 percent tomorrow, wagers on a cut by December have jumped to 60 percent, from about 35 percent before China devalued the yuan Aug. 11.



The new laws will be introduced within weeks and will come into effect on January 1.

“Vaccinations save lives,” Health Minister Jill Hennessy said.

“We are getting tough on this issue because it’s important that we start addressing things like a significant increase in whooping cough.

Australia may legalize medical marijuana in August – report

A fully budded marijuana plant ready for trimming is seen at the Botanacare marijuana store ahead of their grand opening on New Year's day in Northglenn, Colorado

The leader of the Greens recognized in June that there are certain problems with the bill, which are nevertheless not insurmountable. Senator Di Natale said countries that have legalized medical marijuana serve as a good example that it’s possible without violating conventions, so Australia could follow suit.

The medical marijuana growing industry could become a major driver of economic growth for Australia one day, as is already happening in the US. In America the industry is estimated to top $14 billion by 2020, while the global marijuana market is expected to reach $100 billion once fully mature.

Today, Australian federal legislation criminalizes cannabis for both recreational and medicinal purposes, with the exception of limited growth and possession of pot as medicine in some individual states.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott expressed support for the bill last year, saying, “I have no problem with the medical use of cannabis just as I have no problem with the medical use of opiates.”