Avoid kitchen catastrophe

Warning: Firefighter Greg Mantle with Newcastle station officer Peter Messenger are among those from Fire and Rescue NSW urging the public to be aware of how easily residential fires can start in the kitchen. Picture: Nick BielbyIt can take only three minutes for a kitchen fire to turn into a blaze that can leave a home in ruins, a Newcastle firefighter says.
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Hunter residents are being urged to take care in the kitchen after new figures revealed the number of house fires that started in kitchens this year tracking to be close to last year’s numbers.

In 2016, fire crews across the region were called to 361 fires at premises where a flame or heat source had been left unattended in the kitchen.

There have been 146 of these types of fires so far this year.

Newcastle had the highest number of incidents in the regionlast year –99 compared with 34 so far in 2017.

Lake Macquarie had 86 kitchen fires in 2016, compared with 43 in the six months to June.

Wyong has recorded 26 kitchen fires so far this year, after it registered 67 in 2016.

So Fire and Rescue NSW is promoting its Keep Looking When Cooking campaign to spread awareness about how easilykitchen fires can take hold.

The emergency service branch has developed a mini-magazine that is being distributed to cafes, bars and community centres across the state to promote kitchen safety.

The mini magazine will also feature recipes submitted by firefighters, across a variety of cuisines.

Newcastle station officer Peter Messenger said almost half of all house fires started in the kitchen.

“Usually when people turn away from the stove top, get distracted by their television or phone or simply fall asleep,” he said.

“It can literally take just three minutes for a fire to take hold, but only seconds to prevent one so it’s important to be vigilant.

“Kitchen fires represent 45 per centof all residential fires and 34 per centof injuries, with a flame or heat source being left unattendedbeing the most common cause contributing to kitchen fires.

“Hundreds of injuries happen every year due to kitchen fires, so we’re urging people to keep looking when cooking and avoid cooking catastrophes this winter.”

According to Fire and Rescue NSW figures, firefighters are calls to about 3865 house fires across the state each year. Kitchen fires are the most common cause of residential blazes.

An average of 21 people die and 502 people are injured in house fires each year.

Fire and Rescue NSWcommunity safety and research Chief Superintendent Jeremy Fewtrell said firefighters also saw a 10 per cent rise in the number of fires that started in bedrooms or lounge rooms during winter.

“We want to remind people to be careful when using heaters and remember to keep everything in the house a metre from the heater,” he said.

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Crime watch is back

WATCH OUT: Neighbourhood Watch pioneer Bill Hackney of Metford.Huge residential growth in the city’s west, spiralling crime and inadequate police have pushed western suburbs residents to the brinkof wagingtheir own war on criminals.
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Hunter Area Neighbourhood Watch Co-ordinator Bill Hackney and West Ward councillor Henry Meskauskas have joined forces to resurrect a Neighbourhood Watch program and will organise a public forum to gauge community interest.

Mr Hackney said he has been watching with interest social media groups which have been reporting on crime in the westand said it is time to act.

He saidAberglasslyn’s population has grown40 per cent since the 2007 census and along with that growth has come unprecedented crime.

InRutherford in last month there were: Ninebreak and enter offences, 34 reports ofmalicious damageincluding graffiti,50 thefts half of which were stealing frommotor vehicles and 13 assaults of which half were domestic violence related.

“There is a bit of a gang mentality in the Rutherford and Aberglasslyn area,crime is gathering momentum and people are becoming scared.

Member for Maitland Jenny Aitchison who supports the launch of a new Neighbourhood Watch group has beenon a mission to obtain an additional 20 police officers for the Central Hunter Local Area Command.

She said localpolice have a huge workload with a high incidence of domestic violence and the state’s highest incidence of stolen motor vehicles.

“The population of Maitland grows by five new residents a day and we have one of the highest rates of domestic violence across the state which is a very labour intensive crime to work on,” Mrs Aitchison said.

“The police minister can’t tell us how much the actual strength of our command has risen in the six years since the government came to office.

“We need at least 20 more police on the ground right now to make a difference.

“Our cops are doing the same job as those in Newcastle with about 80 less officers.”

A date is yet to be fixedfor the forum to resurrect the watch group which folded about 15 years ago.

TELL US WHAT YOU THINK: Wewelcomeyour Letters to the Editor. Please email your thoughts [email protected]南京夜网.auor join our online Facebook community atfacebook南京夜网/maitlandmercuryThis story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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Central Coast shooting: drug dispute suspected

Central Coast shooting: drug dispute suspected Shooting victim Jesse Thompson was a father-of-two, friends said. Photo: Facebook
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Police on scene at Wyong on Monday. Picture: Dan Irwin

Police on scene at Wyong on Monday. Picture: Dan Irwin

Police on scene at Wyong on Monday. Picture: Dan Irwin

Police on scene at Wyong on Monday. Picture: Dan Irwin

Police on scene at Wyong on Monday. Picture: Dan Irwin

TweetFacebookA teenage father-of-twoshot dead during a car chase on the Central Coast on Mondaywas a known ice dealer who clashed with rivals over supply in the Wyong area.

It’s understood a drug dispute triggered the terrifying car chase and shooting in Wyong just after 12.30pm on Monday.

Jesse Thompson, 19, was shot in the chest as a silver Toyota 4WD he was travelling in was chased through the streets of Wyong by a white ute carrying at least two men.

Police initially said he was 22 however his age was corrected on Tuesday to 19.

Shooting victim Jesse Thompson was a father-of-two, friends said. Photo: Facebook

The two cars first met on the corner of Byron Street and Panonia Road in Wyong on Monday and an altercation ensued.

Mr Thompson’s car then sped off as the men in the ute opened fire from behind. His car stopped about 600 metres away on Warner Avenue to flag down a passing ambulance.

A witness, Lloyd Kelly, said he saw four men “hanging out of the 4WD screaming” before they dragged Mr Thompson’s body out of the car.

Police sources have confirmed details supplied to Fairfax Media bya local man and acquaintance of Mr Thompson’s who said the teen was well-known in Wyong for dealing ice.

The acquaintance, who asked for his name to be withheld for his safety, said he would often watch Mr Thompson going in and out of houses on Casey Drive in North Wyong buying and selling ice.

Late last year, as the acquaintance was sitting at a bus stop outside Cutler Centre shops, opposite Casey Drive, he saw police stop and searchMr Thompson.

“The cops took his backpack off him and put him in the police car,” he said.

“Police gotta do something about [the drug dealing], there’s too many kids that seethis everyday in Wyong and on Casey Drive. Something needs to be done, it’s a joke.”

Mr Thompson had two daughters with his girlfriend of five years. On his Facebook profile, he said he worked at Red Rooster.

On Monday, close friend Brittney Tatesaid Mr Thompson was “a great father, son, brother, cousin, uncle”.

“He was so loved by many. He was always smiling” she said.

Police have interviewed a 28-year-old man who was in the car with Mr Thompson and sustained a grazed hand in the shooting.

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House of the Week: Terrigalphotos

House of the Week: Terrigal | photos TweetFacebook House of the Week | Terrigal | PhotosNatural materials and open spaces give this lakeside home timeless appeal. Pictures: Coastal Construction and BuildingHaving a home on the water is a dream for many, but sometimes even those lucky enough to find a lakeside property on the market discover it’s still not quite their ideal home.
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When Troy and his wife Amanda found a property for sale beside Terrigal Lagoon – a spot that they regularly visit – they loved the location.

The downside was that the cottage was too small to be a comfortable living space for them and their two young children.

Taking advantage of the location, they built a larger home closer to the water and refurbished the original dwelling for good measure.

Coastal Construction and Building, based on the Central Coast, were pivotal in transformingthe existing building, changing its look entirely and making passers-by wonder if it was a completely new build.

The family lived in the smaller home while it was being refurbished, and while their future home was being built. Nowthey’ve movedto the larger house.

All up, the work took about 12 months to complete.

While the original building is 100 metres from the water, the new home is about 40 metres from the lake.

The bigger property makes it better suited for family life: it has five bedrooms, a study and three bathrooms (including an ensuite with a sauna). Theproperty has space for seven cars.

One of the key specifications for the home was that it had to have an inviting feel for visitors. A large indoor dining area is matched by a similar outdoor space, where the family spends most of their time in the summer.

A butler’s pantry behind the kitchen helps keep the open-plan area tidy when guests are over, while the Sonos music system that’s set up throughout the house has proved invaluable.

Over winter, a gas fire keeps the home cosy and the cinema room is used more frequently.

“We had a big Australia Day party earlier in the year,” Troy said.

“It was great to have a party that big, and that everyone could come over and use the space. They said the house was amazing without being pretentious, it’s just a nice home.”

A big part of this is down to the design created by Andrew Moseley of Suburban Projects. His brief was to use the location to make a functional space that included a deck for outdoor entertaining – something that he managed to do perfectly.

Other professionals were brought in to help sculpt the dream home: Rolling Stone Landscapes took care of much of the outdoor area, including adding a pool, while Coastal Construction looked afterthe exterior. As it is the first home Troy and Amanda have built, they felt it was important to get the right people to help.

The couple chipped in too. Troy helped with manual tasks in the early stages, while Amanda added her touches to the interior later. The couple’s children, aged four and five, were too young to have any real input on the plans, but they were a major consideration in the design.

“They’re pretty adventurous, so we had to make sure the house was kid-friendly as well, as they’ve got a lot of growing up to do,”Troy said.

“We had to make sure the materials we chose would stand the test of time as they’d be getting knocks and bumps and scratches. We wanted materials that were pretty hardy and good quality. The timber floors are made from 100-year-old recycled blackbutt, which is basically indestructible. You could have a party with nine-inch stilettos and it wouldn’t put a mark on them, they’re that hard.”

The flooring, made from old railway sleepers, is one of the highlights of the project for Troy. And although the home has some special features, such as its sauna (which Troy says is “a luxury item but totally worth it”), he is most proud of the use of natural materials throughout the home.

As well as the wooden floorboards, the house has timber wall linings, copper is used in the ceilings, there are stone tiles in the bathroom and a limestone entry way.

Troy didn’t want to chase a modern trend that would look dated in a few years, sothe natural materials and open spaces have giventhe home timeless appeal.

Inspiration came from the Hamptons, the home’snatural surroundings and life at the beach.

Have a home that could feature in Weekender? We’d love to see it. Email [email protected]南京夜网.au.

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Bernard Tomic it’s time for you to live your life – away from tennis

Bernard Tomic in round one action. Photo: Getty ImagesOK, Bernie, bring it in tight.
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Mate, you will recall that time we spoke in person, in that Gold Coast restaurant, you challenged me as to why I write “all that shit” about you. I replied that it’s because, just as your job is to deliver overhead smashes, my job occasionally entails that too. It’s a living.

But now, here we are again.

As you know, right now you are the talk of the tennis world once more, and not in a good way.

After drifting to a dull first-round defeat at Wimbledon, you proceed to unload, as the cameras rolled, on just how bored you are with the whole tennis thing, you know? Yes, for others, playing at Wimbledon might be the goal of their existence, their highest attainment, and for others evenattendingWimbledon as a spectator is right up there on their bucket list.

But not you. You’re a bit too … good for that?

“I don’t know why, but I felt a little bit bored out there, to be completely honest with you,” you said. “This is my eighth Wimbledon, or ninth I think … and it’s tough to find motivation … I couldn’t care less if I make a fourth-round US Open or I lose first round … I believe you have to respect the sport, but I think I don’t respect it enough. I just believe playing many years on tour now has sort of taken a toll …”

And yes, you have your critics on Twitter, you noted, but those losers you reckon, are likely just out there, “somewhere, making $50 an hour”.

Mate, what is goingon?

For me, your comments were like a series rocket-flare soaring high over the raging sea, on a dark and stormy night – nothing less than endless cries for help.

To play Sigmund for a moment, no one could utter such endless quotes – each one a stick of lit dynamite dropped casually down your own tennis shorts – without there being something seriously wrong.

The American tennis writer Ben Rothenberg nailed it when, speaking on 3AW, he said of your performance, “He went straight into sabotaging himself and couldn’t shovel fast enough. Everything he said was just designed to cause trouble for him – it was an impressive amount of self-flagellation.”

Exactly. Or maybe a worrying amount of self-flagellation. This wasn’t a racist, sexist, homophobic or bigoted dickhead inadvertently revealing himself to be sexist, racist, homophobic or bigoted – the usual source of controversial comments by sportsmen. This was damn nigh calculated, verbalhara-kiri.

As I say, endless cries for help.

All right, so here it is.

Mate, stand down. Take a year off. Get totally away from tennis. Find yourself. Neither you nor Nick Kyrgios has ever really had the chance to grow up and make the same mistakes other young men your age make, away from public scrutiny, and clearly have no one in your entourage, or even perhaps in your own family to grip you by the shoulders and tell you the things you need to be told.

So get away from it. Have a year when you don’t pick up a racquet. If you want, go trekking in Nepal. Or back-packing in Chile. Work on a kibbutz in Israel.

Fall in love with a Norwegian woman in Japan, and have your heart broken by a Burmese princess in Patagonia. Live! Breathe! Move!

Your every comment screamed, “I am so bored with this whole f—ing thing, I just can’t stand it any more,” and on one level that is even admirable. But only if you take it to that level, and actuallydoget away from it.

But, one way or another, youcannotgo on making a complete dick of yourself the way you do. For one thing, tennis won’t let you.

You blithely say you can keep doing what you’re doing for another 10 years if you want, and you’ll have made enough money that you won’t have to work, but you are mistaken.

With your publicly professed attitude, tennis cannot afford to have you there. You are anathema to everything it stands for. The man who defeated you in that first round, Mischa Zverev, noted of you, after your comments, “Let’s say he’s the opposite of, let’s say, Rafa.”

And while tennis finds ever more ways to send Rafael Nadal tens of millions of dollars because he represents everything that makes the sport great, it will find ways to send you to Coventry – look it up – because you represent everything that makes people turn away from the sport, by saying and doing things people didn’t even know was possible from a professional athlete.

And there really is another way. Instead of being bored all the time, and dully saying you guess you can make enough money, so you won’t have to work – in which case I guess you’ll still be as bored as you seemed to me to be that day on the Gold Coast – find something you reallyarepassionate for. Move beyond your founding premise that a job is something it is goodnotto have to do. As they say, find a job that you love, and you’ll never work again!

But, right now, that clearly ain’t tennis. So get away from it. Discover a love for tennis, or for something else. But you cannot go on like this.

Stand down, young man. And good luck.

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One man’s mission to find a missing plane

One man’s mission to find a missing plane Crash scene: In this rare picture, the wrecked Stinson aircraft is removed from near the Gully Line in 1958. Photo by Bill Hitchcock
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REMINDER: To mark the 80th anniversary of a famous rescue, a replica Stinson Model A is on display outside O’Reilly’s Rainforest Retreat, in the Gold Coast’s hinterland.

TweetFacebookThe Riddle of the Stinson. It starred a young Jack Thompson as Bernard O’Reilly, the laconic bush hero involved.

REMINDER: To mark the 80th anniversary of a famous rescue, a replica Stinson Model A is on display outside O’Reilly’s Rainforest Retreat, in the Gold Coast’s hinterland.

My interest started with an email from Weekender reader Vit Lapp.

“A famous Stinson rescue occurred in mountains south of Brisbane. The story is well remembered there. There were pictures in the foyer of what used to be a guesthouse, but is now called O’Reilly’s Rainforest Retreat (on the Gold Coast hinterland),” Lapp said.

“When all had given up, this bushman O’Reilly went out. He knew exactly where to go and found people still alive at the crash,” Lapp said.

More background then came from Newcastle’s East End reader Jim Donnelly.

“Your article on the Stinson aircrafts which operated from the old Newcastle airport is very interesting. You state that two Stinsons were imported from the USA in 1939,” he wrote.

“You are probably aware that in February 1937 a Stinson crashed near the Lamington Plateau, in (southern) Queensland. Seven men were aboard. The two survivors were near death and not found until 10 days after the crash. They had no food during that period. They were injured and suffering burns, as the (three-engine) aircraft had burned fiercely.”

He said a cyclone had been raging the night the commercial airliner flew over the farm of bushman Bernard O’Reilly, the dogged lone searcher who eventually found the wrecked Model A airliner. He later wrote about the subsequent rescue in his 1940 book Green Mountains.The two pilots involved were killed on impact as were two of the passengers.

“The three survivors were John (later Sir John) Proud, a member of the Prouds the Jewellers family and two men called Joseph Binstead and Jim Westray. As Westray could walk, he set off to find help (then vanished).”

Proud had a compound facture of the leg and the others could only crawl to a nearby creek to find water. After O’Reilly found Proud and Binstead, he returned to get more help before coming across Westray’s body en-route.

“Later O’Reilly heard a gunshot and contacted the shooter who was able to guide him the rest of the way out. Horses were provided for the rescue and Proud and Binstead were taken to hospital,” Donnelly wrote.

“This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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Manly suspected of salary cap breaches

The integrity of the NRL is under a cloud amid revelations that players from several clubs have taken secret benefits or cash payments in likely breach of salary cap rules.
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The Manly Sea Eagles is suspected of breaching the salary cap via secret payments to at least one player in previous seasons, according to information gathered by NSW police andNRL officials.

But it is understood Manly is not the only club under scrutiny, with the past behaviour of several other clubs also attracting police attention.

In revelations that pose a significant challenge for the NRL and chief executive Todd Greenberg, it is understood the NSW Organised Crime Squad has gathered evidence suggesting secret salary top-up payments have been made to players from several clubs. The information has emerged during an investigation into match fixing allegations.

An NRL insider told Fairfax Media detectives havenot found evidence of anorganised conspiracy involving players deliberatelylosing games. But detectives have information about intelligencebeing leaked by club insiders to punters, and, hidden player payments that may breach salary cap rules.

“It is systemic,” said one witness who has been interviewed by police about his own role making undisclosed player payments at several clubs.

Another figure who has been scrutinised by police, but who denies any wrong doing, is a well-known punter.

When asked on Wednesday by Fairfax Media about whether he had ever made any undisclosed payments to a Manly player, the punterresponded: “You write it. I’ve got no comment to make.” He refused to address the question when pressed butalso said that secret payments were happening “at nearly every club.”

The NRL is facinga situation similar to that in2014, when the Australian Crime Commission, using coercive interview powers, gained information from league insiders about doping issues. That information was passed, in a redacted form, to the NRL before the start of the 2013 season, allowing the league to launch an inquiry and take action.

The NSW Police Organised Crime Squad, which would not respond to questions citing its ongoing inquiry, is continuing to gather evidence mid-way through the NRL season.

It is understood police areyet to share detailed information with the NRL. This may partly be because several of the players and league figures who have given information to detectives have done so during confidential coercive examinations, which can notbereleased to non-police organisationssuch as the NRL. It means the NRL may never have access to information that could allow it to deal with cheats.

An NRL spokesman said league officials were “in regular dialogue with police on matters relating to the game”.

“At this stage, we are not in possession of evidence of salary cap violations which would warrant any disciplinary action,” the spokesman said.

“But we remain in contact with police and will take action if it is warranted.”

One police witness, a businessman, has told investigators he made undisclosed cash payments to help a small number of clubs retain valuable players. Manly was not one of these clubs. But intelligence has also been gathered about a cash handover in a car park in connection to a former Manly player. A second former Manly player is also the subject of allegations involvingundisclosed player payments.

Several well-placed sources also confirmed that both police and the NRL holdconcerns about Manly’s handling of third-party player payments, including the accuracy of club financial records and the possible failure to disclosepayments asrequired by the league. Third-party player payments involve sponsors or club supporters providing benefits to players that are below a certain level and reported to the NRL as part of the management of a club’s salary cap.One well known Manly identity is suspected of condoningbehaviour that risked breaching the salary cap.

Making secret payments to players to top up their salaries may involve the criminal offences of fraud or secret commissions, while also breaching NRL salary cap rules.

Fairfax Media has spoken to a small number of sources who have given evidence to the NSW Organised Crime Squad, including during secretive coercive hearings. It is unlawful to discuss what is said in a hearing, so some sources have asked not to be named.Fairfax Media has also spoken to a NRL insider with knowledge of some of the issues facing the league.

The sources said Manly is suspected to have engaged in salary cap breaches similar to those undertaken by Paramatta, which saw the club lose 12 points, effectively ending its 2016 season.

In news that will relieve the NRL, several well placed sources also told Fairfax Media that the police match fixing inquiry has failed to find evidence of organised game rigging. No person wil be charged with any serious criminal offences linked directly to game rigging, although other charges involving fraud or money laundering may still be laid.

Police informants and those with involvement in the betting activities under scrutiny have described to Fairfax Media some of the testimony and evidence given to investigators. It strongly suggests that a betting identity was given inside information from players and officials, which they then used to inform their betting. Such conduct may involve breaches of NRL rules and relatively minor criminal offences, known as summary offences.

But the betting activities of this punter and his associates are also suspected to involvemoney laundering or the proceeds of crime. One player and one former club staff member are allegedly involved in this betting ring.

Manly has been approached for comment.

Sydney Morning Herald

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Tew hopes Wests will consider community

STATEMENT: Our Knights One Chance facilitator Rob Tew says the community-ownership campaign has been suspended. Picture: Jonathan Carroll
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OUR Knights One Chance organisers hope there is still a possibility forpartial community-ownership if the Wests Group take control of Newcastle’s NRL franchise.

There was speculation on Wednesday that the NRL and Wests had struck a deal to hand over the Knights, who have been fundedby the governing body since the demise of former owner Nathan Tinkler in June, 2014.

The report said an announcement might be made this week, although that would contradict comments from Wests chairman Owen Kilpatrick, who told the Newcastle Herald on Monday:“It’s still a work in progress. We’re certainly not close to getting any deal done.”

The Our Knights campaign was launched in December in the hope of raising $20 million to buy the Knights by selling 40,000shareholdings at $500 apiece.

In a statement on Wednesday,Our Knights facilitator Rob Tew said he understoodthe Wests takeover would proceed but was hopeful there would be a community-ownership component.

“It appears the Wests Group has reached agreement with the NRL for Wests to take control of the ownership of the Knights,’’ Tew’s statement read.


“The Our Knights facilitators are excited that it appears the Knights will continue to have a future in this region.

“This was the reason we commenced our campaign back in November, when there was a risk that the licence may shift from the region in the absence of a local buyer at that time.

“As you are aware, we are supportive of community ownership of the Knights however, we understand that the NRL’s preference was to negotiate with Wests as a consequence of Wests’ history of success, operational scale and asset backing and we have respected the NRL’s decision in undertaking those negotiations.

“For this reason, we had suspended our campaign whilst those negotiations were under way.

“At this point we don’t know what ownership structure is being proposed by Wests. It is Wests’ prerogative should they wish to offer a community shareholding in the Knights.

“We certainly hope they do as we have always been of the belief that a community shareholding in the Knights would benefit the club.

“We look forward to gaining a better understanding of what has been agreed and what is being proposed.”

Wests’ commitment of $10 million towards a proposed rugby league centre of excellence, which, if approved, would be matched dollar for dollar by the state government,was seen as a statement of intent.

If the Wests board endorses the deal tabled by the NRL, the group’s 125,000 members would be asked to ratify or reject the proposal.

BOWING OUT: Rob Tew’s full post.

ON HOLD: Our Knights facilitators Mike Rabbitt, Rob Tew, Marty Adnum, Andrew Poole, John Duncan, Nick Dan and Michael Neilson announced their campaign in December. Picture: Simone De Peak

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The winds of changePOLL

The winds of change | POLL Bundle of Energy: Ed Mounsey works for a Newcastle company that is making big strides in the renewable energy sector. As coal-fired power stations close, more renewable energy is being established.
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Newcastle company CWP Renewables also built the Boco Rock Wind Farm, south of Cooma.

Liddell coal-fired power station will close in 2022.

TweetFacebook“It is a big milestone,” Mr Mounsey.

Mr Mounsey said the Sapphire project had been in construction since January 3.

“It’ll be fully operational by the middle of 2018.”

As for the Hunter’s future in renewable energy, Mr Mounsey said it was “not the most ideal location for wind farms, in terms of the available wind resource”.

“It’s reasonably populated as well, so it makes it harder to locate new projects, given the existing guidelines that are in place,” he said.

He said large-scale solar on the land was “potentially a better fit for the Hunter”.

He said the Port of Newcastle was playing a role in the development of the renewables sector.

His company had chosen the Port of Newcastle, ahead of Port Kembla and Port of Brisbane.

“It’s their proximity, capability and appetite to get into this space,” he said.

“Up until about 12 months ago, they hadn’t done a wind farm. They’re very keen to leverage their facilities.”

A Port of Newcastle spokeswoman said the first of eightshipments of wind turbines for the Sapphire project were due to arrive at the portaround mid-August.

“The project demonstrates the Port of Newcastle’s ability to handle large project cargoes– such as wind turbines, machinery, prefabricated structures and building materials–that contribute to wind farms and construction developments across NSW,” the spokeswoman said.

“As the port has the capacity to more than double its current ship numbers and trade volume, there is ample capacity to grow all cargoes including coal, wheat, fuel, alumina, fertiliser, mineral concentrates, steel and project cargosuch as wind turbines.”

Mr Mounsey said the Sapphire project was an example of investment returning tothe renewable energy sector.

When former prime minister Tony Abbott decided four years ago to axe the carbon tax, it led to uncertainty and a lack of investment in the energy sector.

However, Mr Mounsey said certainty did return two years ago when the Coalition and Opposition agreed on a revised renewable energy target.

This target is aimed at ensuring 23.5 per cent of Australia’s electricity comes from renewable sources by 2020.

The Clean Energy Regulator released a report in May, which found that unprecedented investment in wind and solar power had putAustralia on track to meet this target.

The report said 98 new large-scale renewable energy plants, mostly solar farms,were accredited last year. This investment momentum had continued this year.

Furthermore,the Finkel review was released last month, callingfor the introduction of a clean energy target.

Under this proposed target, 42 per cent of Australia’s electricity would come from renewables by 2030.

The Finkel schemewould require new renewable energy power plants to have baseload power back-up in the form of batteries, pumped hydro storage or a gas-fired power station.

In its submission to the Finkel review, the Clean Energy Council said“the technology exists to deliver a secure and zero-emission electricity system”.

“It should be expected that Australia will require a zero-emissions electricity system by the middle of the century, as part of the global response to climate change,” the council’s submission said.

After Australia’s 2030commitments are met, a new set of targets “will need to be established that will require the electricity market to transition to a zero-emissions system by 2050”, the council said.

“This should be planned for over the coming decade.

“This will require careful planning and reform of the energy market to ensure an energy system that can facilitate much higher levels of renewable energy and energy storage.”

Mr Mounsey saida well thought out transition was needed from a largely fossil-fuel based generation sector to one based on clean and renewable sources.

“We’re 100 per cent supportive of the Finkel review,” Mr Mounsey said.

“It sets a clear direction for the sector.”

Mr Mounsey said his company would like“both sides of politics to get behind it and provide certainty, so we can get on with the job”.

Labor is backing the Finkel review, but has also committed to 50 per cent of electricity coming from renewables by 2030.

The Coalition has not committed to the clean energy target, amid concerns about its affect on the coal sector.

But Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has said the target is up for discussion, as is the prospect of using taxpayers’ money to help build new “high efficiency, low emissions (HELE)” coal-fired plants.

But there are doubts about whether the HELE plants will be able to compete with cleaner forms of energy production, as Australia seeks to reduce carbon emissions by enough to meet itsinternational commitments on climate change.

And the biggest power generators in Australia have said they don’t want to build these types of power plantsbecause of their prohibitive cost and risks associated with the price ofcarbon.

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Matildas on show at home

GOAL: Sports Minister Stuart Ayres, Matilda Emily van Egmond and Newcastle Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes. MATILDAS star Emily van Egmond has competed at an Olympic Games, won a Bundesliga titleand played footballin almost every continent on the globe.
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The 23-year-old midfielder has earned 61 caps for Australia since making her debut as a teenager in 2010.

But she has never had an opportunity to wear the green and goldin her home town–until now.

As reported in the Newcastle Herald on Tuesday, the Matildas will take on Brazil at McDonald Jones Stadium on Tuesday, September 19.

Emily van Egmond will get to do what her football idols didn’t – play against Brazil in Newcastle. @[email protected]@FFApic.twitter南京夜网/XLXf304tsq

— James Gardiner (@JamesGardiner42) July 5, 2017TweetFacebook Matildas midfielder Emily van Egmond Pictures: Marina Neil and Getty Images“Newcastle has been a strong breeding ground for female footballers and I am very muchlooking forward to September.”

Brazil, led by five-time women’s player of the year Marta, are ranked eighth in the world, one placebelow Australia.

The Matildassuffered a heart-breaking loss 7-6 on penalties to the host nation in the quarter-final at the Rio Olympics last August,which continued string of close results between the nations.

“I’m sure we will be buzzing to go out and play Brazil again,” said, van Egmond, who is home on a break in between German seasons.“It is usually only a goal that separates us.”

Football Federation Australia last week confirmed that Australia will bid to host the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup and Newcastle shapes as a potential games venue.

“It would be everyone’s dream to play at a World Cup in their home town,” Van Egmond said.

Australia and Brazil boastsimilar attacking styles and van Egmond expects first-time spectators to be surprised at the skill level and intensity on show in September.

“Women’s football is changing really quickly,” she said.“The bulk of our squad are based overseas.Brazil is in the same boat as us. It will definitely be a very good match.”

Matildas coach Alen Stajcic said the Brazil series, which falls within a FIFA international window,will be vital in the lead up to the Women’s Asian Cup whichwill be held in Jordan next April.

“It will be a tough challenge for us against some of the best players in the world,” Stajic said.“Brazil has definitely been one of the bench mark nations in world football and we are looking forward to meeting them.”

Tickets cost $20 adults, $15 concession, $10 child, $40 family andare available atwww.matildas.footballaustralia南京夜网.au/tickets.

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Meet Nelson Bay’s road heroes

Rhys and Scott Pateman. Picture: Rachel BaxterJust minutesafter Nelson Bay contractorScott Pateman and his son Rhys freed two victims of arollover on the Devils Pinch, they turned to see a car flying through the air towards them.
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“It was like a scene in a movie,” Mr Pateman said.

A split second later and the pair were diving for safety as a red sedan rolled off the New England Highway near Armidale.

It crash landed beside the first car, with five shaken men dangling upside down in their seats.

“It must have rolled six or eight times,” Mr Pateman toldFairfax Media shortly after the incident on Monday morning.

“We ran over, ripped the door open and got them out.”

Mr Pateman’s 21-year-old son, Rhys, was travelling to work with his father installing airconditioning atthe Armidale Hospital redevelopment.

Nelson Bay contractors save sevenIt’sa temporary job while they wait to commence a contract on the Williamtown RAAF base.

“I’ve never seen anything like it …I was pretty shaken up,” he said.

“Afterwards it felt like any other day when we got to work.

“We kept getting updates from family and friends of the media coverage.”

But heroism runs in the family.

“My other two children area police officer, a nurse and myson-in-law is a paramedic …maybe it’s in the blood,” Mr Pateman said.

“We’re just fishermen though.”

The female passenger of the first car was rushed to Armidale Hospital where she received 13 stitches in her head.

The driver, suffering from back pain, was reported to be in a stable condition.

Armidale Police Sergeant Laurie Cattell said it was likely both carsslipped on black ice on theDevils Pinch, a bend of road notorious for its tight corners and icy conditions.

“There’s a possibility there may have been black ice on the road given the fact that we had another heavy frost up here this morning,” hesaid.

Sergeant Cattell toldFairfax Mediathe incident was a bizarre coincidence that both vehicles were to land parallel, facing the same way on the side of the highway.

“Both cars came around the corner and lost control both ending up in the same place side by side,” he said.

Mr Pateman said he was surprised, but very grateful, no one was seriously injured.

“We’re glad noone was seriously hurt,” he said.

The pair hope to head back to Nelson Baysoonto catch up on some fishing.

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Our Knights suspend community ownership campaign

ON HOLD: Our Knights facilitators Mike Rabbitt, Rob Tew, Marty Adnum, Andrew Poole, John Duncan, Nick Dan and Michael Neilson announced their campaign in December. Picture: Simone De PeakTHE consortium seeking community ownership for the Newcastle Knights has put its campaign on hold, citing a “reached agreement” with the NRL for Wests to take control of the club.
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Former Knights chairman Rob Tew and Our Knights facilitator Rob Tew said the group had suspended as the negotiations progressed.

“The Our Knights facilitators are excited that it appears the Knights will continue to have a future in this region,” he told the group’s supporters on social media.

How Newcastle could own its team“This was the reason we commenced our campaign back in November, when there was a risk that the licence may shift from the region in the absence of a local buyer at that time.”

Mr Tew wrote that “it appears the Wests Group has reached agreement with the NRL” but Fairfax Media reported this week that Wests Group president Owen Kilpatrick hosed down suggestions his company was on the verge of stepping in.

“It’s still a work in progress,’’ Kilpatrick said. “We’re certainly not close to getting any deal done, no.

BOWING OUT: Rob Tew’s full post.

Mr Tew said the group understood the NRL had long preferred Wests to a community ownership model “as a consequence of Wests’ history of success, operational scale and asset backing”.

“We have respected the NRL’s decision in undertaking those negotiations,” he said.

“At this point we don’t know what ownership structure is being proposed by Wests. It is Wests’ prerogative should they wish to offer a community shareholding in the Knights.”

The Our Knights group had proposed a model that would raise $20 million through selling $500 shares in the Knights in a model inspired by overseas community-owned teams including the Green Bay Packers.

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‘Someone knows what happened to my girl’

Sandra McSavaney, with her only surviving daughter Sharon Robards (centre) in 2015. She has lost her other daughters Lisa Sara (left) and Tracey Valesini (right). Main photo: Marina Neil A PORT Stephens mother has joined police in pleading for information to help find her daughter on what would have been her 45thbirthday.
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The state government announced on Wednesday a $100,000 reward was on offer to help find Tracey Valesini.

The occasion led Ms Valesini’smother and Anna Bay resident Sandra McSavaney to join Homicide Squad detectives in Sydney to appeal to the conscience of anyone with knowledge of her daughter’s fate.

Tracey Valesini. Picture: NSW Police

“Someone knows what happened to my girl, and enough is enough – please tell the police what you know and help put my mind at ease,” Ms McSavaney said.

“No one should ever have to bury a child, but I haven’t even been given that opportunity.

“If anything, I want to be able to bring her home and say proper goodbyes – the least Tracey deserves is to rest in peace.

“We’ve had too many birthdays and too many Christmases without Tracey, and I am pleading for someone to come forward so that today – her 45th birthday – is our last without answers,” Ms McSavaney said.

Fairfax Media reported in 2015 that Ms McSavaney, who suffers from terminal lung cancer, had also lost another daughter after she was strangled to death in 2002.

The last confirmed sighting of Ms Valesini was a custody hearing at Campbelltown Courthouse in January 1993. She was 20 years old, and failed to appear for a further hearing on February 12.

Unsolved Homicide team co-ordinatorDetective Inspector Stewart Leggatsaid Tracey was a resilient, independent young woman.

“Unfortunately, these strengths have made investigating her disappearance difficult for police,” he said.

“By all accounts, Tracey was very much in charge of her own life, even at a young age, and by her late teens, she would often go for long periods without visiting her family.

“That said, it was out of character for her to no-show at court for the custody hearing as her daughters were her world.”

Her family have made numerous fruitless attempts to contact Ms Valesini in the intervening 24years but her housemates had left their Sadleir home without a forwarding address.

Detective Inspector Leggat said police had gleaned that Ms Valesini moved to Wentworth Falls with a new boyfriend, his sister and her partner until 1993.

Police have since been told Ms Valesini moved out of that property before the other three left in May that year when the relationship deteriorated.

But that is where the trail ends.

“She hadn’t accessed her bank accounts or government benefits since December 1992, with the exception of a single deposit and withdrawal more than 12 months later,”Detective Inspector Leggat said.

Strike Force Sonning was established in 2001 to reinvestigate the disappearance.

Police searched Tracy’s former home in Wentworth Falls that year, finding blood believed to be hers.

A coronial inquest was held in 2006, with a finding that she died some time in 1992 or 1993 “of injuries inflicted upon her by another person.”

NSW police ministerTroy Grant said the government’s $100,000 reward offer would assist investigators.

“No family should endure not knowing what happened to their loved one, and the NSW Government is committed to providing police with what they need to find answers for families like Tracey’s,” Mr Grant said.

Police are urging anyone with information that may assist Strike Force Sonning investigators to call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or use the Crime Stoppers online reporting page.

The Herald, Newcastle

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