The Australian government is helping Pacific island nations address climate change.
According to a release from the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme, the government of Australia have signed a long-term partnership with a coalition of Pacific nations.
The Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID) revealed that it provide SPREP with $10.5m in funding over a three-year period.
Pacific islands relies heavily on fossil fuels. But given their size, their collective carbon
Tuvalu and Niue both have 100% renewable targets set for the not-too-distant future. SPREP says the Cook Islands, Fiji, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Nauru, Samoa, Tonga and Vanuatu also have similarly ambitious aims.
Developing nations is at most risk of climate change impacts.
A Swedish diplomat who saved nearly 100,000 Jews in Nazi-occupied Hungary is the first honorary Australian citizen.
Raoul Wallenberg was posthumously recognized for saving the lives of tens of thousands of Jews during the Holocaust in 1944 by issuing protective passports and providing shelter in diplomatic buildings.
He was honored at a Monday's ceremony at Government House. The ceremony was attended by relatives of people Wallenberg help save.
Australia joins the United States, Canada, Budapest and Israel in making Mr Wallenberg an honorary citizen.
In 1945, Wallenberg disappeared after being sezied by Russian soldiers and according to Russian officials died in a prison cell in the KGB's Lubjanka prison. Russian officials claim that Wallenberg died of "natural causes".
Shipments of live cattle by Australian exporters to Egypt was halted following a video footage taken at a slaughterhouse by an animal rights group showing mistreatment of cows.
The country's cattle industry representative, Australian Livestock Exporters' Council, said shipments of local cattle to Egypt has been suspended after they were presented with a footage that shows vicious treatment of the animals.
The video, which was taken by Animals Australia, had been filmed at two abattoirs certified to process cattle imported from Australia.
In 2006, similar concerns prompted Australia to stop exports of cattle to Egypt that lasted for four years. Livestock exports to Indonesia were also halted in 2011 over practices of cruelty toward the animals.
Animals Australia has not made the videos public although they believe that the cattle in question came from Australia.
A copy of the footage was also sent to the nation's agriculture department, which has requested an investigation of the matter by the Egyptian authorities.
Phillip Glyde, the country's deputy agriculture department secretary, said he was shocked by the by recurrence of the issue. Prime Minister Julia Gillard said she welcomes the decision by the industry to suspend shipments.
Australia's cattle export industry is worth around A$1bn ($1.03bn) on 700,000 cows sent abroad every year.
Australia has expressed opposition to the death penalty that is planned to be imposed by Papua New Guinea.
Australia's Foreign Minister Bob Carr said this to PNG government officials during his visit.
According to Australian Broadcasting Agency PNG prime minister Peter O'Neill says he will implement the death penalty to deter violent crime after a spate of murders and gang rapes.
During a quick visit to Port Moresby, Mr Carr met with both Mr O'Neill and his PNG counterpart, Rimbink Pato.
Mr Carr says the prime minister spoke about PNG's law and order challenges, and he voiced Australia's opposition to capital punishment.
Prime Minister Julia Gillard will make her first visit to PNG next week.
Human rights watchdog Amnesty International meanwhile has slammed PNG's implementation of the death penalty.
The death penalty is part of PNG law, although it has not been carried out since 1954, when PNG was a colonial territory of Australia.
The government said this week it was considering death by firing squad as a more humane method than the legally prescribed death by hanging.
UNESCO in June is set to name the Great Barrier Reef as a World Heritage Site in danger.
A long-awaited assessment of the reef by UNESCO and the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), released on Friday evening, says decisive action must be taken to avoid a listing in June.
The report claims the federal and Queensland governments have failed to improve water quality or halt coastal developments that could affect the reef.
The report also says there's been no clear commitment by the either federal or Queensland governments to limit port developments near the reef.
Conservationists Sunday, April 28, accused Australia of failing to protect the Great Barrier Reef from massive industrial development as they launched a multi-million dollar campaign to drum up awareness.
The Great Barrier Reef is a major tourist destination generating $6 billion a year.
According to WWF-Australia, recent polling it conducted showed 91 percent of Australians think protecting the Great Barrier Reef is the country's most important environmental issue in 2013.
Severe drought is being experienced in Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, Western Australia .
A Climate Commission report titled Critical Decade: Extreme Weather released last month said that the forecast for more extreme heat and the resultant extreme weather events.
Australia's new policy on drought is to manage or future-proof farmers and give them the tools to be better business managers and climate mitigators, rather than relying on crisis management which is how the previous exceptional circumstances program is perceived.
Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard has unveiled a shortfall of $12bn in the government's tax revenue, although she has vowed to continue with programs for new education and disability assistance.
In a speech delivered on Monday in Canberra, Gillard confirmed the unusually low revenue, which analysts even failed to forecast, potentially creating a huge fiscal gap over the budget period. Ms Gillard said that spending is controlled but the revenue collected by the government from taxes has grown much slower than expected.
The government has recently revealed problems with meeting its revenue targets, which is a stark contrast from its tone last year where it insisted it could return to surplus.
Ms Gillard's ruling Labor party, which currently trails in the polls for the election in September, is working to revive its image in handling the economy following its failure on its pledge to deliver a budget surplus.
Despite the setback, the nation's first female leader is keeping her pledge to raise funding for programs aimed at schools and disability care, a move that could add more pressure to the government's coffers ahead of the presentation of spending plan for the next fiscal year.
The prime minister said business profit has been hit, citing lower gains from Australian exports, cheaper imports and fierce competition among local companies. She added that lower business profit naturally means less money the government can get from taxes.
BHP Billiton Ltd. has agreed to sell its Pinto Valley mine and railroad in Arizona to Capstone Mining Corp. in a deal worth $650mn in cash, marking the biggest acquisition by the company that also owns mines in Canada and Mexico.
Amid falling commodity prices and global demand, BHP has been restructuring its business by offloading non-core assets. The company has said it is focusing to its core business like mining iron ore and coal.
It reported a drop by 58 per cent in six-month net profits earlier this year.
The transaction is expected to be completed by the second half of the year and will be subject to regulatory approval.
Capstone Chief Executive Darren Pylot said the acquisition gives the company its third producing mine that has a long mine life, which is in line with its strategy to build an intermediate copper producer in the Americas.
BHP has divested nearly $5bn worth of assets over the past year, including the sale to PetroChina of its holdings in the Browse LNG project in Western Australia for $1.63bn.
The Australian mining group also sold to Harry Winston its Ekati mine in Canada and its diamond marketing operations for $500mn. It also offloaded its stake in Yeelirrie in Western Australia and Richards Bay Minerals in South Africa.
Australia's Federal Treasurer Wayne Swan said that the country's revenue has taken a $7.5bn writedown since October, citing the impact of the high Australian dollar.
In an interview with the Australian Broadcasting Corp. network on Sunday, Swan said that the economy has been hit with a high dollar and lower trade terms, which have significant impact to business profitability and prices.
A report released on Monday by independent think tank Grattan Institute showed that the country's state and federal governments may have deficits that combine to 4 per cent of gross domestic product (GDP), or about A$60bn a year, in the next decade. Majority of the extra spending would come from health costs, according to the report.
In the same interview, Mr Swan also said he does not believe in suggestions that the current decline in European carbon price has threatened future tax cuts and pension increases.
By 2015, the country's carbon pricing scheme will be linked to Europe's system, when an emissions trading scheme replaces the fixed carbon tax.
Carbon permits fell to as low as 2.63 euros ($3.34) for every ton last week.
Australia's Opposition has warned that Australia's carbon market will feel a significant impact from the drop of carbon price in Europe.
Despite New Zealand's passage of legislation legalizing same sex marriage, Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard says she won't be moved from her stance against gay marriage.
Australia has been criticized by lagging behind New Zealand.New Zealand is the first the Asia-Pacific in Asia Pacific to legalize gay marriages.
Last year, an attempt to legalize gay marriage failed in the Australian parliament.
Australian gay couples are planning to cross the Tasman to wed after New Zealand's parliament voted to legalize same-sex marriage.
Ice in the Antarctic is melting 10 times faster than it was 600 years ago, according to a study conducted by a team from Australia and Britain.
A research team from the Australian National University and the British Antarctic Survey drilled a 364-metre (1,194 feet) long ice core from James Ross Island in the continent's north to measure past temperatures in the area.
Visible layers in the ice core indicated periods when summer snow on the ice cap thawed and then refroze.
The scientist measured the thickness of the melt layers and compared with changes in temperature at the ice core site over the last 1,000 years.
The research, published in the journal Nature Geoscience, is only the second reconstruction of past ice melt on the Antarctic continent.
Oil giant Royal Dutch Shell has put up for sale its only remaining refinery in Australia as the company tries to retool its local operations and adapt to major changes in the country's energy industry.
The Anglo-Dutch oil company said on Thursday that is considering the idea of converting its Geelong refinery into a fuel import terminal should if fail to find a willing buyer. The plant, which currently employs around 450 staff and 100-150 contractors, has the capacity to supply nearly 50 per cent of Victoria state's fuel needs.
Shell said the move to dispose the Geelong refinery, located near Melbourne, is in line with the company's global strategy to focus its investment on large scale sites like its Singaporean refinery in Pulau Bukom.
Bank of America Merrill Lynch will be assisting in the sale process that is expected to bring a finalized deal by the end of the year, according to Shell.
Last year, Shell and Caltex announced the closure of two older refineries near the Sydney area, cutting nearly a third of the country's refining capacity.
Following these announcements in 2012, the Bureau of Resources and Energy Economics predicted that the five remaining refineries in the country, including the one in Geelong, would only produce just half of the country's normal consumption and the remaining requirements would have to be imported.
Shell's latest announcement would leave just a handful of refineries in Australia, which would include Caltex's plant in Brisbane, BP PLC's refineries in Perth and Brisbane and ExxonMobil Corp's plant in Melbourne.
Australia is failing in its international obligations to protect the rights of close to 2,000 children now in immigration detention, say rights groups and legal expert
Since December 2012, despite the best attempts of the tobacco industry, all tobacco products sold in Australia have been available only in drab dark brown packaging with just a name in standard font to distinguish one brand from another
It is a time of tension in East Asia with growing nationalism, territorial claims between Japan and its neighbours and the persistent challenge of a nuclear North Korea
The competition between top sailors Paul Goodison and Tom Slingsby for medals at London 2012 took a new twist following a sailing incident at a key warm-up regatta
The Trans-Pacific Partnership could add billions of dollars to the U.S. economy and solidify Washington's commitment to the Pacific. But if the Obama administration fails to calm critics of the deal, there is a growing possibility that it could collapse
Normally, we would not expect Australia -- a relatively well-off and isolated country -- to have been involved in many wars. This has not been the case for Australia and, more interesting, it has persistently not been the case
Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard announced that the country agreed to host a U.S. military base. Observers said the deployment of American troops to Asia-Pacific is a move to counter China's growing influence in the region
Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard has expressed support for allowing the sale of uranium to India in the near future
Three men and a women from Spain were in an Australian court after they were arrested in connection with the seizure of more than 600 pounds of cocaine from a yacht in Queensland, the second significant seizure in just over a year
Australia's resumed push to swap asylum-seekers arriving by boat with refugees from Malaysia is the government's most recent policy response to an issue that has preoccupied officials and the public for years
Concerns about the changing balance of power in the Asia-Pacific are fuelling a debate in Australia about the potential acquisition of 100 F-35s. The decision is important in a country where maintaining regional air superiority remains critical to its national security thinking
The door for China's dramatic increase in influence in the island nations of the Pacific was opened by decades of mismanagement of Pacific affairs by western allies Australia and New Zealand. And if the US and the west want to regain ground, the two Pacific partners are going to have to rethink how they engage with the region
President Obama's immigration plan calling for a huge increase in visas for foreign science and engineering graduates will pose a huge challenge for China, India and Latin America
The Australian Sports Anti-Doping Agency is investigating six top-flight Australian rugby league clubs after the Australian Crime Commission reported widespread use of banned performance-enhancing drugs
Since its 2006 coup, Fiji has demonstrated that Australian power and influence in the South Pacific can be challenged by its smaller neighbors. But will Fiji overplay its hand?
Malcolm Page will be leading the Australian Sailing Team at the 470 World Championship. It is one of three World Championships the Aussie crews will compete in building up for the 2012 Games
After a series of reforms and recent landmark elections that gave opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi her first-ever parliamentary seat, Australia announced it would lift some of the travel and financial sanctions against Myanmar
Australia granted temporary visas to a boatload of rescued Chinese citizens to replenish their supplies, arguing that it could not legally stop them from their scheduled path to New Zealand
Australia's policy of indefinite mandatory detention of asylum-seekers is under renewed scrutiny after the recent suicide of a Sri Lankan refugee
Just three months after Canberra banned animal exports to Indonesia in the wake of graphic TV footage showing the abattoirs' cruelty to cows, Australia tightened their livestock export rules, asking exporters to guarantee the welfare of animal
Australia's northern regions may be assaulted by more than 12 cyclones in the coming months due to La Nina weather conditions, according to the country's weather service
A recent decision by Australia's high court to stop its federal government from swapping refugees with Malaysia underlines what has fast become a major debate over how to treat Asia's refugees.
The unemployment rate in Australia unexpectedly increased in July to 5.1 percent, according to a report by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS)
Bainimarama, the self-appointed prime minister of Fiji, is a South Pacific dictator. But he's not very good at it. The State Department says it has seen no reports of 'unlawful killings,' disappearances or political prisoners in Fiji. What kind of dictator is that? But he immediately earned the undying enmity of his largest neighbors, Australia and New Zealand
Just a week after a vessel sunk near Christmas Island in the Indian Ocean, another asylum-seeker vessel with 150 people aboard sank while en route to Australia
Australia is keen on creating the world's largest network of marine reserves in order to protect ocean life
Just days after local beef was linked to an E-coli contamination scare in the U.S., Australia assured that its beef is safe for domestic as well as foreign markets
Rights groups have welcomed a decision by the Australian government to process all asylum-seekers in the same way, regardless of how they arrived in the country
As global politics and economic development pivot to Asia, Australia is itself becoming a pivotal country in regional and global affairs
Australia is rapidly re-posturing in the face of a militarized East Asia
Qantas Airways faces yet more negative publicity and possible legal action from the mother of an unaccompanied child traveller after the Australian airline confessed losing the boy at Hobart Airport last month
Australia's plan to send asylum seekers to Malaysia got an unexpected vote of confidence from the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), who says the proposed plan is safer and better for asylum seekers
A report commissioned by the Australian government has revealed the pristine natural winter snow of the Australian Alps could disappear by 2050. The 'Caring For Our Australian Alps Catchments' report said the Alps are endangered by climate change
Qantas signed a contract to order from Airbus 110 new aircraft. It is the largest single commercial jet order in Australian aviation history
Australia had a 72 percent increase in its trade surplus in August
Winds carried ash clouds from a volcano in Chile thousands of kilometers across the Atlantic Ocean to affect flights in South Africa early this month, so it is possible that the spores of a variant of a deadly mutant fungus, Ug99, a wheat stem rust that surfaced in South Africa in 2009, could travel to Australia - one of the world's four main wheat exporters - in the same way