'You're not broken': Gay conversion therapy to be outlawed in Queensland
Therapists who use exorcisms, hugging, behavioural management and heterosexual marriage to "heal" homosexuals face 18 months in prison under the changes.Therapists who use methods such as exorcisms, hugging, behavioural management and marriage to "heal" homosexuals in Queensland would face 18 months in prison under the proposed changes.
Sydney residents have woken to another day of thick smoke haze, with little hope for any end in sight. Authorities are warning poor air quality conditions will "We strongly urge schools to keep kids indoors if conditions are very smoky … try and avoid being exposed to the smoke wherever possible."
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Sydney residents have woken to another day of thick smoke haze, with little hope for any end in sight.
Authorities are warning poor air quality conditions will continue throughout the day and into the weekend.
The air quality index is forecast as hazardous in many areas of Sydney and the surrounds today, with the NSW Environment Department's website crashing under the strain of people searching for information.
Last day of spring brings thunderstorms amid very high fire danger
Sydney will face another afternoon of thunderstorms on Saturday, amid very high and severe fire danger warnings across the state. Sunday marks the first official day of summer and will come on the back of hot, dry and windy conditions causing very high fire danger in Greater Sydney, the Central Ranges and the North Western region.In the Greater Hunter the Bureau of Meteorology has issued a severe fire danger warning.Total fire bans across those areas will remain in place until midnight Saturday, as firefighters continue to battle more than 150 blazes across the state.
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This morning, the smoke had dissipated a little over the city, however was quite thick over Sydney's eastern and southern suburbs, including Randwick, Camden and Wollongong. It settled over the CBD mid-morning.
The smoke is being blown from large fires to near Warragamba Dam and the Wollombi National Park, where large blazes are burning out of control.
Last week, more than 1100 people were taken emergency departments across the state for asthma for breathing problems, which NSW Health said was "high than usual".
The air quality across the city is currently one of the worst in the world, with experts urging people to stay indoors.
"Unfortunately this is one of the longest and worst smoky periods that I can ever recall, and it's having a huge impact on everyone, particularly with people on asthma and but more broadly than that," CEO of the Asthma Foundation Michelle Goldman told Today.
Face masks 'close to useless' against smoke
The number of emergency department and ambulance call-outs for breathing difficulties has increased.The head of the environmental health group at the Menzies Institute for Medical Research, Associate Professor Fay Johnston, said cloth or paper masks do not filter fine particles such as the ones caused by bushfire smoke.
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"The best course of action is to avoid breathing in the smoke, so it's pretty common sense - stay indoors wherever possible, if you can work from home do so.
"We strongly urge schools to keep kids indoors if conditions are very smoky… try and avoid being exposed to the smoke wherever possible."
Unions NSW said non-essential workers should be given the option to stay indoors or take the day off because of the smoke haze.
"As the smog persists in coming weeks, no one should feel compelled to work outdoors if their health is likely to be affected. Employers have an obligation to provide a safe workplace," Unions NSW Secretary Mark Morey said.
The NSW environment department said this season's bushfire emergency has caused "some of the highest air pollution ever seen in the state".
"NSW has experienced elevated levels of pollutants as a result of smoke of the bushfire emergency, and dust caused by the severe drought," a spokesperson said.
Sky Blues not by affected by smoky Sydney
Despite bushfire smoke across Sydney, Sky Blues coach Steve Corica says his in-form A-league team haven't been affected.FFA on Friday said an easterly wind change forecast for Saturday afternoon was expected to provide an Air Quality Index (AQI) reading at a satisfactory level, allowing the match at Kogarah's Netstrata Jubilee Stadium to be played in Sydney's south.
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It is the longest and most widespread pollution on record.
"The only way the smoke stops is with rain and a lot of it," Helen Kirkup from the Bureau of Meteorology said.
"Wherever there's fire, there's smoke and wind changes might provide some temporary relief to certain places but that also just fans smoke which can just make things worse."
Almost the entire coastal area of NSW and much of the state's northeast have a severe fire danger rating today, as crews battle several mammoth blazes.
Total fire bans are in place for the far South Coast and the Monaro alpine, southern ranges, Illawarra-Shoalhaven, central ranges, Greater Sydney, Greater Hunter, northern slopes and northwestern regions.
There are 97 bushfires burning across the state on this morning and less than half were contained.
More than 2000 firefighters remain in the field battling the blazes.
'Hazardous' blanket of haze hangs over Sydney .
Sydneysiders have woken up to another morning of toxic smoke hanging over the city, with NSW environment authorities warning of poor air quality for Tuesday. Commuters heading into Sydney's CBD have been greeted with a skyline, harbour bridge and the iconic tower shrouded in haze. Over the past 24 hours, Richmond, St Mary's and Rouse Hill in Sydney's north-west all recorded hazardous levels of ultra-fine PM2.5 particles in the air. Parts of Sydney's south-west also suffered from very high PM2.5 readings.