AQ – Volume 85, Issue 2



Cutting Through the Clamour

Australia’s dependence on coal cannot be overstated – it accounts for 74% of our domestic electricity generation and is the country’s second biggest commodity export earner. Yet many of the initiatives proposed to ween Australia off our fossil fuel addiction fail to appreciate this fact. Radical changes are demanded but, in the harsh light of day, is radical change even the best option? AQ cuts through the clamour to take a realist look at a topic too readily derailed by hyperbole.

Colin Scholes

Building a Capacity for Conservation

Pol Pot’s Khmer Rouge regime decimated Cambodia’s social, political and human landscape. It initiated what would become an ongoing legacy of rapid deforestation and ecological destruction. To save Cambodia’s delicate ecosystems Flora & Fauna International have begun a Capacity Building project to foster a new generation of conservationists. Up against rampant illegal logging and a corrupt system, these ecological crusaders offer up hope for a country recovering from the devastation of a terrible past.

Nicholas J Souter


Justice – Back to the Drawing Board

“Innocent until proven guilty” is the noble principle that underpins the concept of justice in all modern democracies.  It constitutes an invincible barrier of legal protection for the innocent but, alas, also for the guilty.  Many countries around the world – including Australia – report staggeringly few convictions in sexual abuse cases. Is the burden of proof causing sexual predators to walk free? And is it time that we had a hard look at the concept of ‘innocent until proven guilty’?

Rodney Crisp

Revolutionising the Mapping of Nature

The Atlas of Living Australia is the country’s largest repository of data on the flora, fauna and microorganisms living across our continent. It provides access to 42 million records, unique datasets and data management tools that are free and accessible to anyone anywhere in the world. From scientific researchers to citizen scientists it has changed how we look at, understand, and manage our unique ecosystems. And the collection only continues to grow.

Rebecca Blackburn, John La Salle, Peter Doherty