What the press is saying about petrol, LPG, diesel, crude oil, biofuel etc.

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Victoria Hospital Chaos

10/07/2013. 17 of the 47 ambulances on duty in Melbourne on Monday night were effectively off the road. These ambulances, with their highly skilled medical staff, were waiting for up to two hours, with patients, still on-board, outside hospital emergency rooms.

Waiting because there were no beds available, in either the emergency department or main wards.

On the 23rd of June paramedics took a 71-year-old man to the Frankston emergency department with chest pain. This gentleman was forced to wait on an ambulance trolley for two hours outside the hospital.

Nearly a third of heart attack victims never make it to hospital in time to receive proper treatment. Patients' chances of survival are greatest if given prompt medical treatment during the first hour, the golden hour, from the onset of a heart attack. The heart muscle starts to die within 80-90 minutes after it stops getting blood.

Unfortunately staff at Frankston Hospital could not find room to treat him and arranged (after 2 hours) for transfer to the Monash Medical Centre.

He died in transit.

This is terribly distressing for paramedics, hospital staff and family, knowing his death might have been avoided had he received proper medical attention when he first arrived at the emergency room.

However this is by no means an isolated case.

Last week premier Denis Napthine issued an apology to the family of an 85-year-old woman who was unable to receive treatment at seven Melbourne hospitals and who was forced to wait nearly four hours for treatment after suffering a suspected heart failure.

Last month, Parliament was told that an 89-year-old World War II veteran spent more than seven hours on a stretcher at Frankston Hospital suffering from dangerously low blood pressure and a urinary tract infection.

There is not a shortage of ambulances, or indeed emergency room beds. The problem lies once patients are stabilised in the emergency room and require admittance into the hospital proper.
There are just not enough beds in the main wards.
Or to be more precise; there are enough beds; however, there is not enough money to pay for the doctors and nurses to staff these fully equipped, empty wards.

No money; yet the Federal Government spent $155,000 of tax payers' money on an advertising campaign promoting the Federal Government's decision to return $107 million to Victorian hospitals. The same $107 million they quietly took out only last year.

Or the $10 million of taxpayers' money (from the Health budget) spent on a pre-election advertising blitz of Government programs.

We believe that the Government should spend this money on employing nurses and doctors and open these wards.
Better still, the Federal Government should make more beds available in nursing homes, (a Federal Government responsibility) to free-up beds in hospitals (a State Government responsibility).

We want action, not ads.


ExxonMobil Vows to Maintain Refinery but Carbon Tax Remains a Concern

29/05/2012. Exxon's new head of Australian and New Zealand refining, Andrew Warrell, said that while there were no plans to close the Melbourne refinery, threats to the industry were real and the Gillard government's carbon tax would bring further strain.
Mr Warrell said the carbon tax was putting structural pressure on the industry at a time when it was already struggling.
The disadvantage would grow as the government's compensation shrank by 1.3 per cent a year, he said.
"We can't blame all of that (the refinery closures and reviews) on the carbon tax, but we can certainly say the environment that has been established hasn't been conducive to those ongoing businesses."
The Exxon refinery supplies half of Victoria's fuel and employs 350 people.

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Norsk Hydro plans to shut down its aluminium smelter at Kurri Kurri in the NSW Hunter Valley.

24/05/2012. Norsk Hydro senior vice-president Olaf Wigstol announced yesterday the Kurri Kurri plant near Newcastle would be mothballed within three months and that many of the 344 remaining employees would be made redundant.
Greg Combet, the local member and the federal Minister for Industry and Innovation, stated in a press release: "today’s announcement has been driven by current financial losses that are unrelated to the carbon price"
This is contrary to the press release from Norsk Hydro, which does appear to blame the carbon tax, at least in part.
"Following a thorough review, it is clear that the plant will not be profitable in the short term with current market prices, while long-term viability will be negatively affected by a number of factors including increasing energy costs and the carbon tax."
The company plans to mothball the Kurri Kurri plant until conditions improve.
Mister Combet stated he was "especially concerned for the workers and their families."
The carbon tax starts on 1 July.

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Qantas announces job cuts as profits slide

21/05/2012. Qantas is axing 500 jobs and reviewing hundreds of maintenance positions after reporting a sharp fall in first-half profit.
The airline made $42 million in the six months to the end of December, down 83 per cent on the $241 million it made a year earlier.
Mr Joyce blamed industrial action, which led him to decide to ground the airline's entire fleet last year, and high fuel costs for the profit slump.
Although the carbon tax was not mentioned, under the carbon tax, the excise on kerosene used in aircraft will nearly triple from 3.556 per litre to 9.536 cents per litre.
This increase might not sound a lot; however, a 747 has a fuel capacity of about 216,000 litres. The carbon tax will add nearly $13,000 to a tank of fuel.

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21-05-2012 Qantas announces job cuts as profits slide
09-05-2012 Small Business Tax Reduction Scrapped
01-05-2012 RBA cuts official interest rate to 3.75%
20-03-2012 Mineral Resources Rent Tax (MRRT) Bill 2011 passes the Senate
18-02-2012 Private Health Insurance Rebate
17-02-2012 Future of Caltex Refineries
17-02-2012 150 Qantas catering jobs to go in Adelaide
07-02-2012 Rates on Hold
27-01-2012 Back to School in 2012
12-12-2011 Roads and Traffic Authority Name Change
01-12-2011 Politicians pay rise
01-11-2011 RBA interest rate cut
27-07-2011 Shell to cease refining at Clyde
12-04-2011 Shell to close Clyde Refinery
03-02-2011 Shell annual profits double to $18.6bn
26-01-2011 Back to School 2011
03-06-2010 Xstrata Suspends A$ 586 million of Expenditure.
21-05-2010 Aussie Dollar Climbs From 10-Month Low Amid Intervention Talk
19-05-2010 Fortescue Metals puts $17.5bn projects on hold to review super tax
12-05-2010 Rio Tinto to review new Australia investment over tax
11-05-2010 Xstrata suspends $30 million exploration in light of the Government’s super profits tax
04-05-2010 Rates rise - Again
28-04-2010 Backflip on "the Greatest Moral Challenge of our time"
04-02-2010 Shell profits fall sharply on weak oil demand
27-05-2009 Caltex Australia agrees to purchase Mobil service stations
31-03-2009 Perth Motorists Ripped-Off
18-03-2009 Jobs at risk after Bushmaster exclusion
10-03-2009 Volunteer Sacked For Swearing
04-03-2009 Gross Domestic Product shows first negative result in 8 years
13-02-2009 Victorian Bushfires
04-02-2009 RBA rate drop to 3.25%
31-01-2009 Victoria: No power, No Trains, No Water
30-01-2009 Shell profit 2009
22-01-2009 Back to School
08-01-2009 “Green Holden” update
24-12-2008 $149 Million to build green Holden
12-12-2008 Tax Cut for Small Business - Smoke and Mirrors
08-12-2008 Surplus Virtually Gone
07-12-2008 Government Stimulus Payments
05-12-2008 Elective Surgery Summer Break
05-12-2008 Fuel tax will inflate grocery bill
03-12-2008 NSW hospitals are full, try Queensland
12-11-2008 FuelWatch dead and buried
29-10-2008 BP Quarterly Results - Profit up by 83%
29-10-2008 Excrement found in Dessert
24-10-2008 OPEC agrees to cut output by 1.5 million bpd
15-10-2008 Crude oil below $80 per barrel
08-10-2008 RBA cuts rates by 1% to 6.0%
11-09-2008 Crude Oil below $100 - Petrol higher
08-09-2008 Big Parties Big Losers this weekend.