Monthly Archives: March 2019

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Seabins to catch rubbish in Aussie waters

n-designed a Seabin devices are to be installed in Melbourne and Sydney.Floating bins which suck up rubbish from waterways won’t solve the pollution crisis facing the world’s oceans – but they’re a good start.
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Seabin Project co-founder and chief executive Pete Ceglinski admits the floating bins – “a simple idea” – have their critics with some questioning how much of a difference they’ll really make.

But while the n doesn’t pretend they’ll save the oceans he knows they can be part of a coordinated response.

“The solution isn’t Seabins – it’s education, changing our consumer culture and learning how to recycle better,” he told AAP.

Mr Ceglinski, a keen surfer, teamed up with fellow Aussie Andrew Turton in 2015 to create a floating rubbish bin which sucks in water, trapping litter and debris, before pumping the water out again.

The Seabins can be placed in marinas, yacht clubs, docks and “any waterbody with a calm environment”.

The project was launched with a successful crowdfunding campaign and Seabins are now installed in 11 countries overseas.

They’re about to come “home” to with Seabins to be installed in Melbourne and Sydney in early June.

The company is undertaking an “operational trial” with the City of Melbourne and is also partnering with the National Maritime Museum on Sydney Harbour.

A council spokeswoman told AAP “we look forward to exploring the potential of the system to keep our urban waterways clean”.

A museum spokeswoman says it’s committed to working with the company to protect “beautiful oceans” for future generations.

The bins – which double as scientific water monitoring stations – are fixed to floating docks and move up and down with the tide collecting up to 1.5 kilograms of waste every day.

They are purchased by marinas and yacht clubs, for example, who monitor the bins which can hold up to 20kg of debris before being cleaned out.

Seabins are placed in controlled waters where they can be easily monitored.

“We start upstream, close to the source of the litter,” Mr Ceglinski says.

“We figure if we can catch the litter close to the city and stop it from entering the ocean that’s a start.”

In , they’ll be launched as part of Seabin Project’s “share program”, which sees environmental groups collect the rubbish and process the data.

The groups will count how many cigarette butts, plastic bags and other products are captured and then advocate for more responsible waste management practices.

“We’ll be able to learn what the real state of our waterways is,” Mr Ceglinski said.

“That’s the way we’re going to fix the ocean plastics crisis.”

Most entrepreneurs want to see their product eventually used all over the world.

But Mr Ceglinski wants the opposite – a world where Seabins are redundant because rubbish isn’t entering waterways in the first place.

American environmental activist Bill McKibben says the bins sound promising but aren’t enough on their own.

“With the scale of pollution you’d need a billion bins,” he told AAP.

“By 2050 there will be more plastic in the ocean than the weight of (all) fish.”

Paris attacker was on radicalism database

The man behind a deadly knife attack in central Paris was born in Chechnya and had been on police radar for radicalism, and his parents have been detained for questioning, French authorities say.
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Counterterrorism investigators are working to determine whether the man who stabbed five people in a busy neighbourhood in the heart of the French capital Saturday night had any help. The attacker killed a 29-year-old man and wounded four others before being shot by police.

Witnesses reported hearing the man shouting Allahu akbar, the Arabic phrase for God is great, during the attack. The Islamic State group claimed the attacker was one of its fighters, but provided no evidence or details about his identity.

The assailant had been on a nationwide database of thousands of people suspected of links to radicalism, according to a judicial official. Extremists behind multiple attacks in France in recent years were also on radical watch lists.

The official said on Sunday the assailant, born in 1997, had French nationality but was born in the largely Muslim Russian republic of Chechnya, where extremism has long simmered. The official wasn’t authorised to be publicly named speaking about an ongoing investigation.

The man had no record of arrests or criminal activity, and didn’t know his victims, Interior Ministry spokesman Frederic de Lanouvelle told The Associated Press.

The attacker targeted five people and then fled, according to Paris police and a witness. When police officers arrived minutes later, he threatened them and was shot dead, according to police union official Yvan Assioma.

Bar patrons and opera-goers described surprise and confusion, and being ordered to stay inside while the police operation was underway on rue Monsigny in the lively 2nd arrondissement, or district, of the French capital.

“I was working in the restaurant and suddenly I heard a woman screaming … he came and attacked her,” said Jonathan, a witness working nearby who wouldn’t provide his last name. “That s when the panic started, everyone started screaming and trying to reach our restaurant. … The attacker just kept walking around with his knife in his bloodied hands.”

“Police were quickly on the scene, in less than five minutes. They encircled him and he tried to attack them with a knife but they shot him down,” he told reporters.

A police official said the assailant didn’t have identity documents with him during Saturday’s attack but was identified thanks to DNA.

The four people injured are out of life-threatening danger, Interior Minister Gerard Collomb said.

Collomb held a special security meeting on Sunday to address the Paris attack, whose motive was unclear.

The Islamic State group’s Aamaq news agency said the assailant carried out the attack in response to the group’s calls for supporters to target members of the US-led anti-IS military coalition. France’s military has been active in the coalition since 2014, and IS adherents have killed more than 200 people in France in recent years.

Service NSW app set to make Digital Drivers Licence available on smartphones

When you’re rushing out the door of a morning, it’s easy to leave something behind.
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But, in the next fortnight, legislation will be introduced to Parliament, enabling a phased state wide rollout of the Digital Driver Licence (DDL).

The rollout of the technology will be subject to an implementation plan.

Once finalised, the DDL will be made available through the Service NSW app.

Minister for Finance, Services and Property Victor Dominello said the DDL would be the first of its kind in , more user friendly and highly secure.

“Smartphones have become de facto wallets and we’re using cutting edge technology so that drivers can use a digital licence in everyday scenarios,” Mr Dominello said.

“The Dubbo trial was a big success and drivers gave it the thumbs up. The legislation will enable expansion of the trial so that other NSW drivers can opt in to access a digital licence.”

The DDL wouldn’t just be valid for roadside police checks, the proposed changes would also allow proof of identity and proof of age to gain entry into pubs and clubs.

Since November 2017, more than 1,400 people in Dubbo have participated in a trial of the technology, with an 83 per cent customer satisfaction rating.

The DDL will provide additional levels of identity security and increased protection against identity fraud compared to the physical driver licence. Drivers who opt in will still be provided with a physical card, but not required to carry it with them.

The new laws follow extensive consultation with industry stakeholders. The Bill proposes to amend the Road Transport Act 2013, the Photo Card Act 2005, the Gaming and Liquor Administration Act 2007 and the Liquor Act 2007.

There is one thing extra users would have to remember though –fully charging their phones.

Scottish serial killer Dennis Nilsen dies

Dennis Nilsen, one of Britain’s most infamous serial killers, has died behind bars at the age of 72.
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The Prison Service confirmed the man who became known as the Muswell Hill Murderer died at HMP Full Sutton on Saturday, 34 years into his life sentence.

It is believed he died from natural causes.

During the late 1970s and early 1980s, Nilsen carried out a murderous spree of near-unparalleled savagery.

He is believed to have killed as many as 15 young men, most of them homeless homosexuals, at his north London home.

After luring his victims to their death, Nilsen would often sit with their corpses for days before dismembering them.

His warped crimes were only detected by chance – when a drain outside his home on Cranley Gardens, Muswell Hill, became blocked by the human remains he had tried to flush away.

He was jailed for life with a recommendation he serve a minimum of 25 years in 1983, on six counts of murder and two of attempted murder.

“Homosexual predator Nilsen would often befriend his victims in the pubs and bars of London, before offering to entertain them at his flat.

Once there, many were strangled to death – sometimes after they had lost consciousness – leaving him free to defile their remains.

A grim interview aired in 1993 saw the bespectacled Scottish murderer describe the macabre scenes that followed.

He told an interviewer how he enjoyed caring for the bodies, dressing them and undressing them and recounted in horrific detail how they were then cut up.

While some remains were inexpertly flushed away by Nilsen, others were stored under his floorboards and in cupboards for many months, meaning detectives were greeted with the foetid stench of decay when they first searched his flat.

Brumbies play to 2nd worst home crowd

A crowd of just over 5,000 attended the Brumbies’ Super Rugby loss to the Rebels.’s Super Rugby woes are extending to off the field with the Brumbies playing in front of their second-lowest ever crowd for a home game.
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Just 5283 supporters turned out at GIO Stadium on Saturday night for the ACT team’s clash with rivals Melbourne.

That figures sits only behind an attendance of 4000 back in 1999 when the Brumbies smashed the South African-based Bulls.

A Rugby League World Cup match between France and Lebanon attracted more fans (5492) at the same venue last October.

While it was a cold Canberra night against the Rebels, the turnout for a conference derby is of concern to the Brumbies and Rugby .

It adds to the frustration of n teams losing 39 straight games against New Zealand opposition, with the second anniversary of the last win fast approaching.

“It’s really sad to be honest, as a rugby union person,” Brumbies coach Dan McKellar said.

“It was obviously a cold, damp evening. Everyone in this room and here tonight wants the game to be thriving. The reality is at the moment it isn’t.

“Our form is playing a part of that and I’ve got to front up and take ownership of that 100 per cent.

“I want our boys playing in front of 15,000 people – people I know care about them.”

Several factors can be to blame for the turnout, including a delayed push for a new stadium in Canberra close to the city centre, but the Brumbies aren’t alone with their crowd struggles.

The highest figure for a Super Rugby game in this year (16,135) came when the Rebels lost to the Hurricanes at AAMI Park.

Even a NSW Waratahs and Queensland Reds rivalry match at the SCG in April saw 15,648 fans come through the gate.

The Brumbies are averaging 8464 supporters a game this season, which is inflated by playing in the NSW Waratahs in front of 13,515 fans.

The Western Force, who were controversially axed from the competition last year, attracted a crowd of 19,466 in their World Series Rugby game against Fiji on May 4.