Prime Minister Scott Morrison has refused to strengthen Australia’s emissions targets at the Earth Day global climate summit, as the United States, Japan and Canada ramped up their 2030 commitments. In his speech, Morrison boasted that Australia had achieved a 36 per cent cut to domestic emissions from 2005 levels, although that excludes Australia’s gas export industry, with government figures indicating emissions have dropped less than 19 per cent. In his opening address, US President Joe Biden pledged a 50 to 52 per cent emissions cut below 2005 levels by the year 2030, warning that “this is the decisive decade” to tackle the climate crisis. Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau raised his country's goal to a cut of 40 to 45 per cent by 2030 below 2005 levels, up from 30 per cent. Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga announced a 46 per cent cut from 2013 levels by 2030, up from 26 per cent. Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro brought forward a goal to achieve carbon neutrality from 2060 to 2050. Australia has no target date to achieve net-zero emissions.
Travel to and from India will soon face tougher restrictions as Australia's leaders declare the nation high-risk due to a devastating surge in Covid-19 cases. The National Cabinet agreed to reduce the number of flights from India from later this week, in a blow to Indian-Australians separated from families. It will also be harder for people to be granted exemptions to travel to India. Covid-19 tests will also be required 72 hours before people return. India on Thursday reported 314,835 cases in a 24-hour period as a “double mutant” strain sweeps the country, surpassing the previous highest one-day record set by the US. Deaths rose by 2104 as the country’s health system begins to buckle under the strain of the rapid growth in cases. Six hospitals in New Delhi had run out of oxygen and the city needed about 5000 more intensive care beds, according to the city government. People are turning to social media to crowdsource oxygen cylinders and other medical supplies.
Queensland Police has promised to review the handling of domestic violence cases after Kelly Wilkinson was allegedly murdered by her estranged partner on the Gold Coast earlier this week. The promise comes after Ms Wilkinson’s charred remains were discovered in the backyard of her Arundel home, with neighbours alleging they saw flames above the fence height and heard a man yelling “get inside”. Wilkinson and her family had previously gone to police on repeated occasions to raise concerns over her estranged partner. Assistant Police Commissioner Brian Codd said “somewhere along the line, she had engaged with the system, with us, and we were unable to prevent this from occurring.” Police said there were 107,000 domestic violence-related incidents in the state last year. National Sexual Assault, Domestic and Family Violence Counselling Service: 1800 737 732
Indonesia’s President Joko Widodo has ordered an all-out effort to find a missing submarine, with defence chiefs warning the 53 crew likely only had enough oxygen until Saturday. Indonesia sent a helicopter and five ships to search waters north of Bali but found no signs of the KRI Nanggala-402. There are fears the submarine is stranded in a trench 700 metres deep, but navy officials said a high-magnetic area had been located at a depth of between 50 metres and 100 metres, which would be further explored with the expected arrival of a hydrographic survey ship. Indonesia said several countries had responded to requests for help, with Malaysia and Singapore sending ships and Australia offering unspecified assistance. Foreign Minister Marise Payne said Australia would “help in any way we can (though) we operate very different submarines from this one”.