State Government Investigates Gladstone chemical spill and more Zedlines

The Department of Environment and Heritage protection is investigating reports of chemical dumping in Gladstone Harbour (Image Credits: Dimitri Vetsikas).

The spill was discovered after sodium hydroxide leaked from a vessel berthed at the Queensland Alumina Limited Wharf.

 

It is reported that there has been several tonnes of caustic soda dumped in the harbour, which could affect marine life and boats.

 

High Temperatures to hit Queensland.

 

Brisbane is expected to reach high 20s on Tuesday and Wednesday before reaching a peak of 37 degrees Celsius on Thursday - almost 2 degrees hotter than the highest-recorded September day.

 

The mercury in Ipswich is expected to soar to a maximum 40C on Thursday - more than three degrees high than this month’s record.

 

The record-breaking-temperatures are abnormal for this time of the year according to Bureau of Meteorology forecaster Rick Threlfall who said the conditions were due to a lack of rain.

 

Victoria police seize $4 million worth of illicit drug

 

Police have seized about one tonne of a drug known as ‘bute’ and 28 thousand ecstasy pills in Melbourne’s north.

 

Bute, formally known as 1,4-Butanediol is commonly sold at nightclubs and music festivals as the drug GHB.

 

Director of emergency operations, Mick Stephenson says the drug is dangerously unpredictable with high risk of overdose due to slow digestion.

 

Back in June, six people were hospitalised after taking the drug.

 

Showdown over penalty rates staged in the Federal Court today

 

Proposed cuts to Sunday and public holiday rates will be contested in court today over a three-day hearing.

 

An appeal made by unions will seek to overturn the commission’s decision to eliminate penalty rates for hospitality, retail and other workers.

 

Jo Schofield from United Voice says the cut neglects the relative living standards and needs of low-paid workers under the act.

 

But Australian Hotels Association CEO Stephen Ferguson supports the elimination of penalty rates as it will generate more work.

 

Snap election called in Japan as North Korea threat looms over the Island nation

 

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has announced that Japan will go to the polls next month.

 

The snap election comes after polls show 44 per cent of voters would vote for the Prime Minister’s Liberal Democratic Party, where the opposition party only holds 8 per cent.

 

North Korea is set to dominate campaign debate, Prime Minister Abe would revise Japan’s post-second world war constitution to allow Japan to make its own decisions about military action.  

 

Kurdish take part in Independence vote

 

Kurds have ignored pressure and threats from Iraq, Turkey, Iran and the international community, with large amounts of voter turnout for the independence referendum in Northern Iraq.

 

The International community has warned the Kurdish people the vote could lead to more regional conflict, although the vote is not binding.

 

The vote organised by Kurdish authorities is set to receive a majority ‘yes’ vote, if successful the vote would give the Kurdish government control over a large oil-producing region.