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Discussion paper

Dam the expense: the Ord River irrigation scheme and the development of northern Australia

Attempts to develop northern Australia by subsidising capital-intensive industries like irrigated agriculture have a long and unimpressive history.
Report

Heating up: bushfires and climate change

The devastation caused by the 2002-03 fire season precipitated state and federal inquiries. While each inquiry assessed bushfire mitigation strategies, the impacts on the environment and the resources available to fire services, for the first time all the inquiries raised concern about the impact climate...
Report

Who is better at managing the Australian economy: Labor or the Coalition?

The Australian economy has had an unprecedented period of uninterrupted growth since 1992, surviving disruptions from the Asian crisis of 1997, the stock market collapse of 1999, and the war in Iraq. Some politicians and journalists argue that this surprising good run for the Australian...
Discussion paper

The case for a federal corruption watchdog: ICAC needed to fill the gaps in our integrity system

This paper argues that to ensure any corruption and misconduct in our federal government and public sector is investigated and exposed, a federal anti-corruption commission will need strong investigative powers, broad jurisdiction similar to the New South Wales ICAC and other successful state-based commissions, and...
Briefing paper

GFC+10: a survey of public attitudes to the federal government’s handling of the global financial crisis, ten years on

Polling conducted by The Australia Institute asked Australians about the federal government’s handling of the global financial crisis (GFC).
Report

Something fishy: socio-economic impacts of marine reserves in Australia

The Australian government is justifying it proposed plans to remove marine protections by arguing that they have an adverse effect on the fishing industry. However, there is little evidence of any significant negative impact of marine protection measures.
Discussion paper

Meeting our Paris commitment

This discussion paper evaluates the energy policies required to meet Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets set by the Abbott Government and pledged at the international climate summit in Paris.
Report

Greenhouse implications of the proposed Sydney desalination plant

The Carr government has announced that it will build a desalination plant to help resolve the water supply shortage, unless there is enough rain in the next few months to raise storage levels to a 'safe' level. Desalination is an energy intensive process. Because electricity...
Briefing paper

If you build it, they will charge: sparking Australia’s electric vehicle boom

This paper looks at policies that Australian governments can implement to overcome the structural barriers that offer incentives to support electric vehicles.
Discussion paper

Salmon stakes: risks for the Tasmanian salmon industry

This discussion paper looks at the serious risks the Tasmania’s salmon industry faces if its environmental and social impacts are not managed.