The Prime Minister has expanded cabinet from 20 to 22 places, including bringing Mental Health and Aged Care from the outer ministry to cabinet. She has promoted Nicola Roxon, formerly Health Minister, to the role of Attorney-General. Tanya Plibersek, previously in the outer ministry, will takeover the Health portfolio. One of the PM’s key backers Bill Shorten has been promoted to Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations; Minister for Financial Services and Superannuation and Mark Arbib, another backer, has been elevated to Assistant Treasurer; Minister for Small Business; Minister for Sport. Kevin Rudd remains Foreign Affairs Minister.
Just four months after her tragic death – a result of alcohol and not drugs – the singer’s posthumour album Lioness: Hidden Treasures has sold more than 194,000 copies in its first week and topped the UK album charts. It’s the highest selling album of her career. The album was compiled by friends and producers Mark Ronson and Salaam Remi after listening to hours of vocals by Winehouse. The album includes 12 tracks.
Climate talks involving 195 countries, including the powerhouses India, China and the United States, have resulted in an ‘historic’ agreement which would pave the way for binding, legally enforceable climate targets from 2020. But right now it’s more of an agreement to agree with the real terms and conditions on emissions cuts (and what they will cost) to be hammered out in 2015. But many involved in the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) said the deal was a massive step forward because the three big polluters had expressed a willingness to work together and eventually be bound under a single treaty.
Australia’s Climate Change Minister Greg Combet said the result was great news for the environment. “They set the world on a path of long-term action to tackle climate change through a regime with wide global coverage and strong environmental effectiveness. If this agreement is concluded it will see developing countries take on obligations, allowing the world to move on from the Kyoto Protocol’s unsustainable divide between developed and developing countries and ensuring all nations do their fair share to cut global emissions.”