Good morning and welcome to the Morning Buzz for Tuesday, October 17. It’ll be partly cloudy again today with top temperatures of around 23 to 26 degrees. Enjoy your day!
Australia Post's online parcel system crashes
Australia Post's parcel service has been thrown into chaos after the shipping and tracking service failed on Monday.
Small business customers were met with an error message when trying to log into the eParcel service on Monday as the nationwide fault brought warehouse staff and small business owners to a complete standstill.
It is not known whether Australia Post has experienced a technical error or a cyber security incident, or whether there has been a security breach. Read more.
Revelation of cosmic secrets triggers a 'frenzy' of global scientific activity
The collision of two stars in a galaxy far, far away, has been detected by a remarkable collaborative effort involving thousands of researchers around the world that potentially opens up a whole new field of science.
Among much else, the titanic collision expelled the equivalent of an amount of gold the size of Earth, by one estimate.
As well as gold, platinum, uranium and other heavy metals are produced by such extreme events, physicists understand. Read more.
Spring Gully decision 'imminent' say opponents of eco-tourism resort
Members of the Spring Gully Protection Group are making a last-ditch effort to stop a proposed eco-tourism resort at Bundeena.
The group’s leaders believe a final decision is imminent and have encouraged supporters to contact the office of Environment Minister Gabrielle Upton to state their opposition.
The Land and Environment Court ruled in favour of the developer, but the project can’t go ahead unless the minister grants road access through Royal National Park. Read more.
Investigations underway into clearing of Macintosh Reserve by excavator
A group of Kurrajong residents and bush regenerators was appalled to discover that a small reserve on Little Wheeny Creek at Kurrajong had been cleared by a nearby landowner.
Resident Janet Fox said the clearing of Macintosh Reserve was done with an excavator “and the damage was excessive and extensive”, in what is deemed a core koala and powerful owl habitat. Both species she said are listed as vulnerable.
“Clearing this large section along Little Wheeny Creek has created a weak link in an otherwise almost intact riparian zone,” she said, explaining that riparian zones (areas along waterways) form corridors which are vital to species which are highly mobile. Read more.
HSC exam period gets underway
The English exam on Monday marked the start of the HSC examination period for schools across NSW.
The HSC examination period will run until Tuesday, November 7 – finishing with the drama exam – before results are sent out on December 14. Read more.
HSC English exam prompts ugly outbursts on social media
Authors and poets have leaped to the defence of an award-winning Indigenous writer after she was allegedly abused online by year 12 students.
Ellen van Neerven also received messages asking her to explain her poem Mango from the book Comfort Food after students sitting the HSC English exam on Monday were asked to analyse the work.
The opening question in the exam asked students to "explain how the poet conveys the delight of discovery".
However, some students were less than delighted with the question, creating memes on social media inspired by the poem. Read more.
Dads learn the art of hair styling
It’s not often that little girls ask their dads to do their hair but Danyelle Connell wants to change that.
The Douglas Park hairdresser hosts Daddy Daughter Hair Workshops each fortnight at Upstairs at Freds in Camden.
Ms Connell said the classes helped fathers to bond with their daughters. Read more.
Shock as Wilkinson quits Today and Nine … and joins Ten
Lisa Wilkinson has quit Channel Nine's Today program – and will soon join rival broadcaster Ten.
The veteran journalist will become part of Ten's flagship panel show The Project – among other roles – from January 2018.
Wilkinson will not appear on Today on Tuesday.
It is understood her poaching has caught Nine unawares. Read more.
PM's energy policy seeks to cut costs, mandate use of 'reliable' coal, gas
The Turnbull government is set to announce a major repositioning of Australia's energy and emissions policy after cabinet signed off on a plan to scrap all renewable energy subsidies in future, mandating instead the use of sufficient "reliable" energy like coal and gas to avoid blackouts.
Fairfax Media understands the government believes it will be able to do this while still meeting the nation's emissions reductions targets under the Paris Agreement.
The plan relies on a growing market uptake of clean energy due to a combination of consumer preference, falling renewables costs, and technological advances in power storage. Read more.
Two dead as Storm Ophelia batters Ireland
Two people have died as Tropical Storm Ophelia battered Ireland's southern coast on Monday, knocking down trees and power lines and whipping up 10-metre waves.
The former hurricane had reached Category 3 strength farther east than any Atlantic storm in recorded history.
It dragged tropical air and dust from the Sahara Desert over parts of Europe, turning the skies in London and parts of France an eerie orange hue. Read more.
New Oxford dictionary brings whatevs to the sandwich generation
Ever discussed the dark web with a hacktivist? Or photobombed a kibbeh-munching paleo with a selfie stick?
Maybe you're a member of the sandwich generation, in constant fear of a fiscal cliff.
Whatevs. Take a Doona Day.
The new Australian Concise Oxford Dictionary includes more than 2000 new entries and 3000 updates to existing words to reflect the evolution of English as it's spoken in Australia.
The sixth edition - released on Monday - includes new words across technology, food, finance and economics, as well as social buzz words. Read more.
England pose greatest threat to Australia, says Valentine Holmes
Much has been made of the recently bolstered Tonga and world No.2 New Zealand leading into the Rugby League World Cup, but it's England who provide the biggest danger to Australia, says Kangaroos winger Valentine Holmes.
The Cronulla flyer, who spent time at fullback in Australia's Tri-Nations trial on Saturday, believes the combination of a dominant forward pack, the presence of half Gareth Widdop and coach Wayne Bennett could cause Australia problems as they look to retain their World Cup crown. Read more.
Socceroos decide on Honduran base for 2018 World Cup qualifier
The Socceroos will throw themselves into the fire ahead of their World Cup play-off with Honduras, opting to spend the lead-up week to their away match in the Central American nation.
Coach Ange Postecoglou and Football Federation Australia have decided against basing the team in the United States ahead of the clash.
In doing so, they'll give themselves the best chance to acclimatise. Read more.
Selectors causing instability in Australian team, says Usman Khawaja
Usman Khawaja has questioned Australia's selection policy abroad, saying he was denied the opportunity to develop his game overseas by being dumped for this year's series in India and dropped in Bangladesh.
The left-hander is favoured to win back the No.3 spot and start the five-Test Ashes series against England, having enjoyed two successful summers in a row with the bat at home. Read more.
Shane Mumford and GWS still sweating on medical results
Shane Mumford's playing career is hanging in the balance as the GWS Giants veteran awaits the results of medical tests on his troublesome left leg and ankle before deciding on his playing future.
Mumford, 31, fractured the navicular bone in his foot during the Giants' qualifying final loss to Adelaide and didn't play in his side's semi-final or preliminary final the next two weeks. Read more.
Fate of Allianz and ANZ stadiums expected to be announced on Thursday
Sydney's drawn-out stadium war is expected to come to a head on Thursday when Sports Minister Stuart Ayres asks cabinet for more than $2 billion to knock down and rebuild both ANZ and Allianz stadiums.
The unresolved issue, though, is which will be done first.
Fairfax Media has been told by several stakeholders from both venues that Mr Ayres' preference is for Allianz Stadium at Moore Park to be levelled in October next year with a new $700 million, 45,000-seat stadium built on the existing site with a view to open it in 2020.
ANZ Stadium would be demolished in 2019 to make way for a new $1.2 billion arena with an opening date in 2021. Read more.