HomeAustraliaGrape degradations offer a sobering insight

Grape degradations offer a sobering insight

It was an insight to learn that grapes, and therefore wine, are so sensitive to climate change (“Say goodbye to chardy: how global warming is changing Australian wines”, May 8). So many of the things that we love are being impacted by global warming. Some are obvious, like the bleaching of the Great Barrier Reef and coastal degradation from rising sea levels. Others, like restrictions in summer sports due to extreme heat days, are not so well appreciated. Although it is wonderful that the wine industry is adapting and quickly becoming more sustainable, it seems that rapidly reducing greenhouse gas emissions is vital to allow us and our children to enjoy all the things that we love about life in Australia, from a sip of chardy to a summer of cricket. Amy Hiller, Kew (VIC)

Teal and present danger

It seems the unwarranted, vicious attack on independent candidates, especially by the Libs, has backfired badly (“Yes, independents are agents of chaos…for the major parties”, May 8). The Morrison government foolishly directed our attention to the independents, when it is struggling to overcome Scott Morrison’s failed leadership, party disunity and lack of vision. Now not only has Labor given them little opportunity for point scoring, but some very impressive independent women have a good chance of winning blue-ribbon Liberal seats. Under Morrison, the Coalition was preoccupied with holding on to government instead of good governance. They are now in panic mode. Independents can be an asset to parliament, but the Coalition fears them because they have integrity and minds of their own, unlike some Coalition MPs. Graham Lum, North Rocks

Independent candidates in Liberal seats may be making individual assessments based on policy or merit. However, one questions their so-called independence when they are mainly funded from one source, Climate 200 controlled by Simon Holmes a Court. He who holds the purse strings jiggle the puppets on the other end. One questions the purity of his intentions if his candidates achieve power in the parliament. Michael Doumani, Randwick

Working-class ban?

Australians have always been very coy around the issue of social class, so it is no surprise that so little media focus is given to issues which directly affect working people, and too much has been given to the typically middle-class, female independents challenging so-called “safe” Liberal seats. (“‘Boof-headed blokes’ may take their eye off main election chance: young women”, May 11). If they are successful, we might at last get some action on climate change, but who will represent the aspirations of ordinary working men and women? We hear of Allegra Spender’s views on such trite local issues as the controversial pedestrian mall in Double Bay, but on federal issues, nothing. Their scope of interest is represented in a limited way, but if elected they will decide this country’s future. It is the working-class vote which will decide the upcoming election, not the vote from the increasingly shrinking middle class, and the Libs know this. Lyndall Nelson, South Turramurra

Not so super for women

Anthony Albanese is promising new policies for women (“ALP’s fair pay pitch to target women”, May, 8), at a time when he has ruled out paying superannuation on government funded parental leave. This should have been included in the original proposal and has been recommended by various inquiries. It is recognised that women have less superannuation than men because of lower wages and time out for child bearing and rearing. Yet, Labor will not commit to at least trying to remedy this situation. Shame on them. Marina Garlick, Balmain

Lessons unlearnt

After working in secondary English classrooms in NSW my entire career, with a few years working in the US and UK on teacher exchange, I have often considered school curriculum priorities that highlighted very different emphasis and imposed directions. (“‘Incredibly loose’: Real problem with school curriculum”, May 8). With increased imposition – some shockingly broken into two or three minute blocks in the UK, and direct text-book following in the US – little was offered in personal creative teaching or learning, or offshoot interests developed. However, covering the curriculum became the priority, rather than learning. The freedom offered teachers in NSW has always allowed personal direction, by prioritising individual student needs and professional decision-making. Yet support by providing teaching and learning materials to “tap into”, more time offered out of class to prepare and evaluate learning, as well as in-class cooperative support is always needed. Being too prescriptive on curriculum, while it provides teachers time, lacks true teaching creativity. Janice Creenaune, Austinmer

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