First Moderna doses arrive in Australia; UN warns world on 'catastrophic' climate path

Australia has added a third weapon to its coronavirus vaccine arsenal as the first Moderna doses have started to arrive in the country.

The Moderna shipment arrived in the country on Friday night, with a second expected soon after.

Epidemiologist Mary-Louise McLaws said the new vaccine would be crucial to lifting the vaccination rate of young Australians: "The young who have been placed at the back of the queue can actually get Moderna into themselves very fast, and they can be doing it for Pfizer as well," she told ABC.

While many parts of Australia remain in lockdown, one of the nation's biggest outdoor art shows has managed to defy COVID-19 despite the enforced absence of some star exhibitors.

With more than 60 large-scale contemporary works on show, Swell Sculpture Festival has transformed a one kilometre stretch of Currumbin Beach on the Gold Coast into an outdoor gallery over the past week.

Festival director and curator Natasha Edwards says her team was forced to make major changes during the planning of the festival but things came together better than ever.

"It has been a roller-coaster ride this year and the whole world has felt the stress of the pandemic," she said. "We've come to realise in times like these getting outdoors and creating and enjoying art is more important than ever."

Do you suffer from frequent migraines?

Sudden lifestyle changes sparked by the onset of the COVID-19 have triggered more frequent and severe attacks for migraine sufferers.

However, researchers have also identified a series of factors associated with decreased frequency of headaches, including consuming less alcohol and processed or fast foods and upping exercise levels.

As a result, Migraine and Headache Australia is encouraging sufferers this month to commit to one small but simple act of daily care to help manage their condition.

In world news, the US has admitted an Afghan strike killed civilians and has apologised for what the Pentagon says was a tragic mistake.

The US military says its drone strike in the Afghan capital Kabul last month killed as many 10 civilians, including seven children,

"At the time of the strike, I was confident that the strike had averted an imminent threat to our forces at the airport," US General Frank McKenzie, the head of US Central Command, told reporters.

He said he now believed it unlikely that those who died were IS militants or posed a direct threat to US forces.

On the climate front, the world is on a "catastrophic pathway" in terms of global warming, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres says.

According to a report by the UN climate agency on Friday, a warming of 2.7C is foreseeable.

"This is breaking the promise made six years ago to pursue the 1.5C goal of the Paris Agreement," Guterres said on Friday. Failure to meet this goal will be measured in the massive loss of lives and livelihoods."

Previously, the UN presented a climate report on the international community's plans for reducing global emissions.

The earth has already heated by 1.2C compared with pre-industrial times.

"The fight against climate change will only succeed if everyone comes together to promote more ambition, more cooperation and more credibility," Guterres said.

WORLD: US admits an Afghan strike killed civilians; UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warns the world is on a "catastrophic pathway" in terms of global warming.

WORLD: US admits an Afghan strike killed civilians; UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warns the world is on a "catastrophic pathway" in terms of global warming.

Back on Australian soil a federal political hopeful will use the push carbon zero as a key plank of her campaign.

Kylea Tink, the former CEO of two high profile charities, will push for more action on climate in a contest for the federal seat of North Sydney against Liberal MP Trent Zimmerman.

Announcing her candidacy on Saturday as an independent, Ms Tink used the neighbouring electorate of Warringah as an example of how independents can shake up traditional liberal seats.

Fellow independent Zali Steggall defeated former prime minister Tony Abbott to win Warringah on a platform largely focused on climate change in 2019.

"We should be leading, not lagging and halve greenhouse gas emissions by 2030," she said.

"Moving rapidly to a zero carbon economy is an historic opportunity to secure our future prosperity and jobs for our kids."

- with AAP

This story First Moderna doses touch down in Australia first appeared on The Canberra Times.