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  • Treasurer’s plan for city eco-rentals boom
  • Concerns grow about Ukraine nuclear plant amid evacuations
  • This morning’s headlines at a glance
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Treasurer’s plan for city eco-rentals boom

Returning to news in Australia, where housing projects will gain new incentives to install clean energy in a federal budget move to help cut greenhouse gas emissions and build more homes.

The “green housing” plan will change tax rules to give developers a better financial return if they build homes that reduce the use of fossil fuels and contribute to a broader national target of net zero emissions by 2050.

The government’s “green housing” plan will provide incentives for developers to build clean energy homes.Credit: Bloomberg

Treasurer Jim Chalmers revealed the measure as part of the looming budget plan for housing in an interview that emphasised the goal of building more rental properties and cutting commute times.

The full story on this is here. 

Concerns grow about Ukraine nuclear plant amid evacuations

Anxiety about the safety of Europe’s largest nuclear power plant grew Sunday after the Moscow-installed governor of the Ukrainian region where it is located ordered civilian evacuations, including from the city where most plant workers live.

International Atomic Energy Agency Director General Rafael Grossi has spent months trying to persuade Russian and Ukrainian officials to establish a security zone around the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant to prevent the war from causing a radiation leak.

The evacuations ordered by the Russia-backed governor of Ukraine’s Zaporizhzhia province, Yegeny Balitsky, raised fears that fighting in the area would intensify. Balitsky on Friday ordered civilians to leave 18 Russian-occupied communities, including Enerhodar, home to most of the plant staff.

Following a Russian attack, first responders remove rubble at a residential building in Uman, central Ukraine in April. Credit: AP

More than 1,500 people had been evacuated from two unspecified cities in the region as of Sunday, Balitsky said. The Ukrainian General Staff confirmed the evacuation of Enerhodar was underway.

Moscow’s troops seized the plant soon after invading Ukraine last year, but Ukrainian employees have continued to run it during the occupation, at times under extreme duress.

Ukraine has regularly fired at the Russian side of the lines, while Russia has repeatedly shelled Ukrainian-held communities across the Dnieper River. The fighting intensified as Ukraine prepares to launch a long-promised counteroffensive to reclaim ground taken by Russia.

Ukrainian authorities on Sunday said that a 72-year-old woman was killed, and three others were wounded when Russian forces fired shells at the city of Nikopol, about 10 kilometers across the river from the plant.

Grossi said the evacuation of civilians suggested a further escalation.

“The general situation in the area near the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant is becoming increasingly unpredictable and potentially dangerous,” Grossi warned Saturday.

“We must act now to prevent the threat of a severe nuclear accident and its associated consequences for the population and the environment. This major nuclear facility must be protected,” he said.


This morning’s headlines at a glance

Good morning, and thanks for your company today.

It’s Monday, May 8. I’m Caroline Schelle, and I’ll be anchoring our live coverage for the first half of the day.

Here’s what you need to know before we get started:

  • There will be $14.5 billion in federal help including energy subsidies and healthcare as part of the budget to be delivered tomorrow.
  • In other budget news, housing projects will get new incentives to install clean energy to cut greenhouse gases, Treasurer Jim Chalmers will be quizzed about his other budget plans on ABC Radio this morning.
  • Former federal Liberal front bencher Stuart Robert faces questions on his conduct as he plans to quit parliament.
  • Australian journalist Cheng Li has spent 1000 days inside a Chinese jail, cut off from her two young children.
  • In NSW, the state Nationals MP at the centre of a brawl over a parliamentary job has broken his silence to accuse the party’s leader of being dishonest about his opposition to the lucrative promotion.
  • Meanwhile, Liberal MPs in Victoria want an end to the saga involving controversial MP Moira Deeming.
  • Turning overseas, King Charles III was crowned at a ceremony in London, and the heir to the throne Prince William, and the Princess of Wales surprised people who gathered outside Windsor Castle.
  • In the latest on the war in Ukraine, concerns are growing about a nuclear power station with civilian evacuations ordered.
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