Instant bank transfers between different institutions possible next year and more zedlines...

Instant bank transfer between bank accounts and different institutions will be made possible from January next year due to a billion-dollar infrastructure upgrade (Image: Pixabay)

The Australia payment systems was reviewed in 2012 to enable customers from the big four banks and 50 smaller institutions to automatically use instant payments from Australia Day onwards.

Chief executive of the New Payments platform, Adrian Lovney says transfers will no longer have to wait over the weekends, and instead funds will arrive about 30 to 45 seconds later into the recipient's account.

Lead ‘major risk’ for pregnant women

New research from Griffith University has found lead poisoning to be a major risk factor for preeclampsia among pregnant women.

The study shows lead levels in blood samples of pregnant women suffering from the disease were much higher than those who had not experienced the condition.

Preeclampsia kills more than 75,000 women globally each year and is responsible for 9 per cent of all fetal deaths.

Queensland Parole Board’s members accused of being “amateurs”

Queensland Parole Board’s acting president Francis Lippett has hit back at claims by former solicitor-general Walter Sofronoff that it’s members are “amateurs”.

In a review of the Queensland parole system, Sofronoff says decisions are being made by “earnest and devoted amateurs who lack any directly relevant experience, qualifications or training".

But Mr Lippett says he could not be more wrong and that the educated, experienced members result in a favourable comparison compared to other Australian and overseas jurisdiction.

Nationals say foreign ownership poses threat to farmers and food

Members of the National Party are calling for the Federal Government to bring in tougher foreign laws, as new data shows a significant increase in China’s investment in Australian farmland.

The information, released by the Australian Tax Office, shows a jump in Chinese investment from 1.5 million hectares to almost 14.5 million hectares.

Nationals senator John Williams says the government should be watchful of the levels of foreign ownership if they are to ensure food security for decades to come.

Portuguese Man of War infesting beaches in Britain

Thousands of Portuguese Man o’ War are washing up on British beaches posing a threat to swimmers along the south coast.

Although the jellyfish-like creatures are not usually deadly, their sting has proven fatal in a few cases.

The Marine Conservation Society says the infestation is the biggest since 2003 as a result of a series of hurricanes in the Atlantic this year.

Coca Cola producing more plastic bottles than ever

According to a new analysis by Greenpeace, last year Coca Cola produced a billion more plastic bottles than the previous year.

The company is being accused of not taking responsibility of their plastic production of more than 110 billion bottles per year.

Although Coca Cola points out that the bottles sold in the UK are made from recyclable plastic, it has failed to implement the same policy for bottles sold elsewhere.