George Pell gives evidence via video link - plus more 10am zedlines

Cardinal George Pell today gives evidence at the royal commission into church sexual abuse. (image source: creative commons)

Bankruptcy on the rise in Central Queensland

A study has found alarming levels of bankruptcy in Central Queensland.

The study found that Rockhampton and Mackay are the worst affected towns, with over 20 people a month filing for bankruptcy in the last two years. It also raised concerns about the numbers in Gladstone and Biloela.

Financial advisors identify a major cause as young men getting high-paying jobs during the mining boom and buying more than they can afford now that work has dried up.
Dairy farmers criticise disease management plan

Queensland's peak dairy lobby group has hit back at what it calls a dangerous and risky revised cattle disease management scheme.

A new strategic plan for the management of Bovine Johne's Disease (BJD) was released last week,dropping quarantine restrictions.

An outbreak in 2012 in Queensland saw more than 170 properties placed under quarantine, prompting debate about response protocols.

A national review of BJD management has been brought forward by Animal Health Australia.


Australia not prepared to deal with extreme heat

A new Climate Council report has revealed that Australia is not prepared to deal with the growing problem of extreme heat waves and to deal with the problem, a whole of society approach is required. 

With nearly 400 deaths during the 2009 heatwave, climate forecasts show that upcoming heat waves will last longer, and be more hotter and intense. 

Record hot days number has doubled over the last 50 years and the report says that heat waves are responsible for killing more Australians than any other natural occurring hazards. 


George Pell gives evidence at royal commission

Catholic Cardinal George Pell is currently giving evidence for the third day in a row at the royal commission into child sexual abuse, via video link from Rome.

Yesterday Cardinal Pell’s gave a 90 minute testimony where he evaded questions about his knowledge of sexual offences by Victorian priest Gerard Ridsdale. Today the priest in question is Peter Searson, but Cardinal Pell has been similarly evasive.

A delegation of sexual abuse survivors from Australian catholic churches is in Rome outside the hotel where Cardinal Pell is staying. They are asking for a meeting with Pope Francis before they leave Rome on Friday.


”Right to Die” laws to be introduced by Canada in weeks

“Right to Die” laws will be introduced by the Canadian government in only a few weeks and they must come up with their first budget by the end of March in order to pass legislation and have it in force by June. 

In addition to being applicable to terminally ill people, the laws will also apply to people who are mentally ill. 

There has been strong division amongst medical professionals in Canada, with some doctors threatening to retire. 


Primary polls for US presidential election

Republican Donald Trump and Democrat Hillary Clinton will look to cement their leads on the biggest day of the presidential primary season.

Voters are heading to the polls in a dozen US states for the biggest day yet in the US primary election season to determine the Republican and Democratic presidential candidates.

Trump’s challengers, led by Senators Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz, hope to stop the political outsider, but Trump leads in all opinion polls except in Cruz's home state of Texas.

Among Democrats, Hillary Clinton hopes to take charge of a race that was considered smooth sailing before senator Bernie Sanders nearly tied with her in Iowa and then defeated her by a large margin in New Hampshire.