Daily News Roundup

February 7, 2019

Image: ABC News

February 7th

The Townsville flood clean-up is about to begin as severe weather eases. For the first time in more than a week there is not a Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) severe weather warning in place.

[There’s] still a chance of some heavy falls, particularly thunderstorms, but even that threat is going to go away in the next 24 to 36 hours,” BOM forecaster Michael Knepp said.

“We are starting to see this event wind down, and by the weekend it looks like this tropical low that’s been sitting in the north-west will move out into the Coral Sea.”

Another emergency alert is current for Hughenden, west of Townsville, warning the Ernest Henry Bridge has been closed and is expected to be flooded.

With the flood clean-up in Townsville only just starting, authorities are warning the flood emergency is far from over.

Graham Hall from the Queensland Reconstruction Authority said late yesterday they had assessed 935 homes in Townsville.

“Of those, about 350 have minor damage where they’ve just got a small amount of water through their living areas,” he said.

“But there’s about 172 that have had [about] half a metre of water to a metre of water through them.”

“This assessment will go on through to the weekend … we’re also going to move out into some of the outer-lying suburbs and rural areas around Townsville.”

Townsville Mayor Jenny Hill said it could be six weeks before repairs to essential infrastructure were completed.

The repair bill for that damaged infrastructure is currently estimated to be about $80 million but that figure is expected to rise.

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Bestselling US author, Daniel Mallory has admitted to lying about having brain cancer for years in a recent article.

In a profile for the New Yorker Magazine, the author of The Woman in the Window made the confession and talked in-depth about mental illness.

The book was written by Mallory under the pseudonym A J Finn and spent weeks on top of the New Yorkers bestseller list.

It has also been turned into a film starring Amy Adams and Gary Oldman, expected to release in October.

Among the revelations in the article are claims Mallory told people he had worked with in the publishing business in London and New York that he had cancer and that he also lied about it on an application to Oxford University.

Mallory had also claimed to have a PHD from the University but records show he had only completed a master’s degree

“It is the case that on numerous occasions in the past, I have stated, implied, or allowed others to believe that I was afflicted with a physical malady instead of a psychological one: cancer, specifically,” Mallory said in a statement.

Mallory also stated he had been “afflicted with severe bipolar II disorder” and “experienced crushing depressions, delusional thoughts, morbid obsessions, and memory problems”.

“It’s been horrific, not least because, in my distress, I did or said or believed things I would never ordinarily say, or do, or believe — things of which, in many instances, I have absolutely no recollection,” the statement said.

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The UN warns that the world is on track to have average global temperatures rise to 3 degrees Celsius by 2100, as record levels of man-made greenhouse gas emissions are trapping more heat in the Earth’s atmosphere.

A United Nations report has shown that last year was the fourth warmest year on record and the outlook shows more sizzling heat approaching levels that most consider dangerous for humankind on Earth.

Weather extremes last year included wildfires in California and Greece, drought in South Africa, floods in India, and record-breaking floods and bushfires in Queensland and Tasmania.

Scientists warn there could be disastrous consequences as a result of rising temperatures.

“The long-term temperature trend is far more important than the ranking of individual years, and that trend is an upward one,” the UN’s World Mereological Organisation (WMO) secretary-general Petteri Taalas said in a statement.

“The 20 warmest years on record have been in the past 22 years,” Mr Taalas said.

2019 also started with scorching temperatures, including Australia’s warmest January on record, while North America experienced a polar vortex that plunged parts of America into temperatures colder than Antarctica’s.

“The impacts of long-term global warming are already being felt — in coastal flooding, heatwaves, intense precipitation and ecosystem change,” said Gavin Schmidt, director of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies.

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