Newcastle Herald Letters to the Editor: Friday, September 14, 2018

IT'S HERE: The first of Newcastle's light rail fleet on Hunter Street. For some readers, its arrival has brought back memories of the heavy rail line's removal. Picture: Max McKinney
IT'S HERE: The first of Newcastle's light rail fleet on Hunter Street. For some readers, its arrival has brought back memories of the heavy rail line's removal. Picture: Max McKinney

CONGRATULATIONS must be in order for the arrival of the Newcastle light rail. Only four years without any viable transport so far. A tad contrary to the former transport minister’s promises that the heavy rail replacement would be costed and operational before demolishing the four-minute journey from Wickham to Newcastle.

It gives me a warm glow considering our generosity in providing work for so many Spanish trades-persons, designers and planners. Although it’s a bit of a shame to see our own trades-persons, designers and planners lining up for the dole.

The four-minute journey from Wickham to Newcastle by heavy rail is to be extended to nearly 20 minutes so I can play a few games on my iPad on the proposed light rail. I get all that exercise walking from the eastern terminus in the middle of Scott Street to my ultimate destination.

The government legal team must have appreciated the million dollars spent to prove that cutting two kilometres of rail line is not cutting a rail line.

It’s pleasing to hear that plans are in hand for the western extensions of the light rail as promised to the Shooters and Fishers to be done by 2014. I imagine that the business people along the proposed route are excited beyond comprehension.

Every cloud has its silver lining.

George Paris, Rathmines

Comedy in cartoon

THERE has been much ado about the Mark Knight cartoon in Melbourne’s Herald Sun on Monday. In my opinion, (for what it is worth), I think the cartoon of Serena Williams throwing a “tanty” is brilliant. It captures the mood perfectly. The point of a cartoon is satire; it is to call-out bad or eccentric behaviour. The fact that Williams is African-American shouldn’t have anything to do with it.

Peter Dutton is often caricatured as a Russet Burbank Potato and I feel that is great. Tony Abbott is drawn with budgie-smugglers, big ears, angry snarl and a hairy chest and that is also apt. How long is it since John McEnroe traded his racket to sell underpants? I recall many, many cartoons drawn of his on-court tantrums. The subjects just have to cop it sweet. Top marks to Mark Knight, I say.

Les Field, Wickham

Come and see yourself

DEAR Ms Fraser, I attended the council meeting on Monday night and I was favourably impressed with the diligence that you and your councillors apply to the 170-plus pages of the agenda items being discussed on the amendments to the proposed building in Brighton Avenue, Toronto.

Congratulations on heading a well versed and well organised team. Having said this I am amazed that the development application has progressed this far and it is only now that a proposal was passed to organise a site visit.

There are other proposed high-rise developments planned for Toronto, Bath Street probably being the most contentious. I would like you to include a visit to this site when you come to Toronto. I think you like to get a feel for the place.

After you have inspected the site I think you will have a clearer understanding of why the residents are protesting and be in a better position to analyse their points of views and concerns. Please include Bath Street on your agenda.

Robin Bastian, Marmong Point

Put spotlight on chaos

MEDIA headlines continue to both warn of and deny ‘global warming’ and ‘climate change’ and totally ignore the truly horrific disaster threatening human life around the planet due to the actual real danger: climate chaos.

As demonstrated a number of years ago on a large simulation model of the meteorological systems in the Caribbean by mathematician and meteorologist Dr Lorenz of MIT, such systems can quickly make the transition to chaotic systems in which no mathematical predictions are possible, the smallest changes in key variables can result in violent changes in the entire system, hence the now famous quip of Dr Lorenz, now renown as the ‘father of chaos theory’: “the flap of a butterfly wing can produce a hurricane in the Caribbean”.

Anyone following the daily weather reports from around the world will be aware of the continuous occurrences of unpredicted record-breaking violent weather events, and record periods of droughts, rain, and extreme temperatures. At this moment in time several of the ecosystems critical to human existence appear to be on the verge of collapsing.

What really is at stake today is not whether some coastal houses might become flooded, but whether large areas now populated by human beings will become uninhabitable.

What is urgently required are policies to reduce the emission of those substances known to be responsible for the meteorological chaos we are now experiencing.    

Peace always.

Norton Jacobi, Redhead

Population boom to bust

IN my opinion, Australia is a tinderbox waiting to ignite due to high carbon emissions responsible for climate change. The government's irresponsibility for our high level of immigration has left us open to an explosion of future population.

We should have a moratorium on immigration.

We need an impact study, with climate change in mind on the effects of population explosion on our natural environment and resources, for example, number one, water versus immigration.

Maureen O'Sullivan Davidson, Swansea

No proof of human link

LIKE Peter Devey (Letters, 10/9) I would like to see some proof (or really, really good evidence in my case) as to exactly how humans can change the drought scene.

Howard Bridgman’s article (Letters, 12/9) states that evidence from CSIRO and the Bureau of Meteorology shows that modern drought periods are strongly linked to human greenhouse gas emissions.

Why not just include that evidence in his article so that we all can learn something? His article then talks about drought records in the Hunter and refers us to a link to Hunter climate data.

Peter Devey’s letter talked about the whole of Australia’s drought record not just the Hunter. Apart from Antarctica (which doesn’t get much rain), scientists tell us Australia is the driest continent on Earth.

We have records going back 200 years.

You can imagine with such an ancient and dry landmass as ours, it is a tad difficult to say with any certainty that our droughts are heading in any particular direction.

Except that they come and go and some are worse than others. Keep praying for rain.

John Mildwater, Caves Beach


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