The Centralian advocate Tue 27 Aug 2013
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8 Centralian Advocate, Tuesday, August 27, 2013 Authorised by N. Scullion, 2/229 McMillans Road, Jingili NT 0810 Senator the Hon NIGEL SCULLION A strong, local voice delivering for all Territorians ADVERTISEMENT NEWS Wrens hardly a handful A dusky grasswren chick shows off his tag Picture: SUPPLIED Katie Weiss THREE little wren chicks have been successfully bred and tagged at the Alice Springs Desert Park. Staff have placed identification bands on the hoppity dusky grasswrens to keep track of them in the parks Desert Rivers aviary. The diminutive birds are smaller than a human hand. Bands are placed on birds in the parks collection to identify each individual. Unlike people, animals and birds can be quite hard to tell apart, a post on the parks Facebook page said. So we use a detailed record system to keep track of each animals life history. This way we know who their mum and dad are, gender, how old they are etc. Dusky grasswrens are found in terrestrial areas across Australia, and many populations have been recorded as increasing. The small birds can be found outside Alice Springs in several places, including Mount Gillen and the West MacDonnell Ranges. Although the birds are not listed as an endangered species, they can be hard to find because they are known for living in remote areas and inhospitable habitats. They are part of the maluridae family of insecteating birds. Community Centre gets $2.5m boost Katie Weiss THE Alice Springs Youth and Community Centre is receiving a multi-million-dollar transformation to become a youth precinct. Minister for Central Australia Matt Conlan said major upgrades had begun as part of the NT Governments $2.5 million commitment to the project. Critical works at the bottom of Anzac Hill are now under way as part of the upgrade, which will include a sprung floor and an extension of current gymnastics facilities. Mr Conlan said the new additions would open up opportunities to run new activities in the space, including fitness, boxing, martial arts, dance and drama. This investment is part of our plan to build infrastructure in regional areas that will make a real difference to provide facilities that are desperately needed, Mr Conlan said. He said a new administration office would be located on the lower level of the building to allow for street-level entry off the existing access road and carpark. The Centre prides itself in promoting a healthy lifestyle and offers a range of recreational activities to the wider demographic of the Alice Springs community seven days a week, he said. The project was awarded to local com pany Scope Building in June and is expected to be completed by the end of the year. Mr Conlan said the upgrade would also improve services offered at the community and youth facility, which are run in a group of buildings as old as 73 years old. Infrastructure Minister Peter Styles said the project would add to the towns reputation as an area providing excellent facilities for young people. It has been designed with the local community in mind and brings energy and activity to what is currently an underutilised facility, Mr Styles said. Ongoing investment in high-quality community infrastructure is one of the best ways to attract prospective businesses, industries and residents to Alice Springs. Mr Styles said the upgrade would contribute to building a healthy and active community in Alice Springs by promoting healthy lifestyles and aiming to improve residents wellbeing. The project is part of the Governments funding agreement with the NT Police, Fire and Emergency Services, Alice Springs Youth Community Centre and the Department of Infrastructure. Plans are on display on the community notice board at The Alice Springs Youth and Community Centre. Outback rain stops oceans rising Katie Weiss Officer in Charge Vicki Maclean and technical officer observer Kerry Howard at the Alice Springs Weather Station Picture: JUSTIN BRIERTY SCIENTISTS say extreme weather in Central Australia was so powerful in 2010 and 2011 it caused global sea levels to drop by seven millimetres. The new theory attempts to solve the puzzling mystery behind the reason for the oceans water levels to fall over that period after consistently rising every previous and following year. Now scientists from the National Center for Atmospheric Research in the University of Colorado and NASA researchers believe they know the answer. Researcher Dr John Fasullo said heavy rains on the small continent of Australia including Central Australia, Queensland and Victoria caused the sea levels to drop. The theory suggests the shape of the continent caused torrential rains in the Centre and other parts of the country to remain trapped on the land instead of rushing back into the ocean and causing its levels to rise. The arid make-up of the Outback caused most of the rain, which measured an average of almost 30cm in Australia during that time, to remain inland. Some of the rain evaporated in the desert sun or sank into the dry, granular soil. Its a beautiful illustration of how complicated our climate system is, Dr Fasullo, the lead author of the study, said. The smallest continent in the world can affect sea level worldwide. Its influence is so strong that it can temporarily overcome the background trend of rising sea levels that we see from climate change. He said the atmospheric patterns had snapped back now and more rain was falling over tropical oceans, making the sea levels rise again. The worlds oceans have been rising in recent decades by about three millimetres annually, according to the research paper published in the Geophysical Research Letters. Luckily weve got great observations now, Dr Fasullo said. We need to maintain these observing platforms to understand what is a complicated climate system. Dr Fasullo and his co-authors said the long-term trend of rising sea levels halted temporarily in 2010 and 2011 due to La Nina. Its only going to get hotter Jessica Brown ALICE Springs can look forward to a warm change this week as temperatures are expected to rise into the mid 30Cs. A balmy top of 30C is forecast for today, allowing Centralians to defrost after last weeks cool weather. Conditions will only improve with sunny days and temperatures ranging between 30C and 35C expected to brighten everyones mood for the rest of the week. The mercury is expected to reach 32C tomorrow, 31C on Thursday, 33C on Friday and 34C on Saturday and Sunday while overnight temperatures are predicted to range between 10C and 16C. The UV index for the week will be very high so sunscreen and hats are a must for children at school and childcare. Keeping on trucking TRUCK bays at the Stuart and Carpentaria Highways intersection at HiWay Inn and the Victoria Highway Sandy Creek Crossing are undergoing upgrades. Minister for Infrastructure Peter Styles said the work is vital to help keep Territory roads safe. Mr Styles said the intersection is being upgraded to improve access and outlet arrangements to the HiWay Inn. The truck parking bays to be provided at the HiWay Inn will complement an ultimate series of truck bays, which are intended to be proved at about 80km spacings, he said. The $1.7 million contract has been awarded and works have begun on the Stuart and Carpentaria highways intersection improvements. The truck parking bays are expected to be completed in November. Work has also begun on a $3.7 million contract to upgrade the Victoria Highway Sandy Creek Crossing.
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