Rugby World Cup 2015: Gutted Michael Hooper backs Wallabies depth to cover for suspension

Rugby World Cup interactive: your guide to every teamFull coverage of the 2015 Rugby World Cup
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LONDON: A “gutted” Michael Hooper has backed Sean McMahon and Ben McCalman to stand tall in his absence, adamant the Wallabies have the back-row depth to continue their World Cup charge.

The Wallabies are facing the biggest challenge of their World Cup campaign with Hooper suspended for the crucial pool match against Wales while Israel Folau (ankle) and Rob Horne (shoulder) are set to miss the game.

Hooper was shocked when told he was cited, but pleaded guilty and was slapped with a one-week ban for his illegal cleanout on England fullback Mike Brown last weekend.

The Wallabies privately feared the incident could end Hooper’s campaign with the penalty varying from two-10 weeks on the sideline.

But the silver lining is that Wallabies vice-captain will be free to play in the quarter final next week after pleading guilty and having his penalty downgraded.

The Wallabies have had minimal disruptions in the tournament so far, but injuries and suspension has thrown down big hurdles as they aim to finish atop the pool of death.

“It’s always a shock to get cited … obviously I’m gutted I won’t be able to be in the mix for selection. It really hurts,” Hooper said.

“You always want to be in these sort of games – the big ones. It’s really disappointing.”

McMahon and McCalman are vying for Hooper’s starting spot while Kurtley Beale and Drew Mitchell loom as the replacements for Folau and Horne.

‘s depth at openside flanker is perhaps the strongest of any position in the team and Hooper’s absence will be capably covered.

Hooper pleaded guilty after reviewing his collision with Brown in ‘s 33-13 win and independent judicial officer Alan Hudson took two hours to deem the offence on the low end of penalties.

Hudson took mitigating factors into account, including: good conduct during the hearing, good character and the absence of any off-field aggravating factors.

“Every match has been important through us throughout the year … we’ve built momentum through each game and this weekend is no different,” Hooper said.

“Whoever puts on the jersey is going to have to do the job, fill the role and do it well.

“Certainly in this tournament style plays [there are hurdles], that’s what I’m starting to learn. You have these unexpected things pop up.”

Hooper has been one of the Wallabies’ most consistent players over the past two years and will leave a huge hole in the starting side after forming an openside flanker tag-team combination with David Pocock.

Youngster McMahon and in-form McCalman will battle for a back-row spot alongside Pocock for the clash against Wales at Twickenham on Saturday night (Sunday morning AEDT).

McMahon and McCalman were equal best on ground performers in the Wallabies’ 11-try rout against Uruguay two weeks ago.

“[McMahon] was here on his first Wallaby tour last year and we saw from the outset the guy was really up for it, really keen to get in and show what he’s worth,” Hooper said.

“He’s shown that in games against the US and Uruguay, how much he is bringing to the team. Someone like Ben McCalman had a fantastic spring tour last year and again is impressing everyone when he’s on the field recently.”

The Wallabies are also bracing to be without Israel Folau (ankle) and Rob Horne (shoulder) as Michael Cheika’s squad faces its biggest test.

Beating Wales will see the Wallabies finish at the top of the pool and potentially give them a smoother path through the World Cup play-offs.

The winner of the Wallabies-Wales clash will play either Scotland or Japan in the quarter finals and avoid New Zealand and South Africa until the final.

Hooper conceded he was surprised when told he had been cited almost two days after the 20-point win against England.

“With pleading guilty I know I was in the wrong. I didn’t think it needed to go further than that [on the field], but I had a very fair trial and one week is going to be tough for me,” Hooper said.

“You never want to miss a Test, but then again we’ve seen [other players] get hefty [suspensions] and you don’t want to be involved in that.

“It’s a tough part of the game, small margins for error and you can get it wrong, then you’re in a situation I’m in or worse,” Hooper said.

“It’s a good example for [teammates] to keep working on that technique during training and not be in the situation I am now.”

Immigration property saga costs industry millions

Canberra Airport boss Stephen Byron says the “local impact” requirement could lead to absurd outcomes. Photo: Jeffrey Chan More public service newsDIBP’s move likely to be off
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Canberra property companies could be millions of dollars out of pocket as a result of the on-off saga surrounding the future of the Immigration Department’s offices, according to the Property Council.

And Canberra Airport has approached the Finance Minister saying the new “local impact studies” that now must be undertaken before departments make a move could cost taxpayers tens of millions of dollars.

The airport’s chief executive, Stephen Byron, says the inclusion of the local impact requirement would lead to an “absurd” position of taxpayers subsidising landlords for providing low-grade offices.

The Finance Department announced on Friday that it was abandoning the expressions of interest process for the new headquarters of the Department of Immigration and Border Protection.

Several local and national property outfits, who had each spent hundreds of thousands of dollars putting bids together for deal, have had to say goodbye to their money as a result of the decision.

The same players were left out of pocket a year ago when a requirement for a new building for the Customs agency was abandoned after the announcement that Customs would merge with Immigration and form the n Border Force.

Property Council of the ACT executive director Catherine Carter said that a lot of time and money had been wasted chasing a tender that kept changing

“There were very substantial costs involved for a number of parties,” she said.

“We note the comment by the Department of Finance last Thursday that local considerations are now to be taken into account.

“It’s a pity these weren’t taken into consideration in the first place, which would have saved a lot of time and money.”

Ms Carter said the bill for participating in the expressions of interest process could be in the millions.

“The potential cost to industry in terms of the preparation of responses to the expression of interest amounts to hundreds of thousands, if not millions of dollars collectively,” she said.

“If government want the market to treat them seriously and respond in a serious way, which they have, then they need to treat industry seriously in turn.”

Meantime Mr Byron, who believes the Airport’s Brindabella Business Park is the most cost-effective option for DIBP, said the new “local impact” rules, which will apply to other proposed moves by departments, will undermine the government’s “project tetris” efforts to curb its spending on office space.

“If … the department stays in Belconnen for reasons other than being the best offer, the opposite of ‘best value’ will occur because the Commonwealth will be paying more and thus subsidising a lesser value tender solution,” Mr Byron wrote to the minister.

“If the DIBP, or any other Commonwealth agency, is not permitted to move from its current location in Canberra to another location in Canberra due to ‘local impact’, then the Commonwealth will be condemned to paying a subsidy to the landlord, and receiving inferior quality office accommodation solutions, for all time.

“That is absurd, yet this is the result that will be forced upon Commonwealth agencies who cannot get proper office accommodation at fair value because they are trapped by your ‘local impacts’ policy in poor C-grade space that does not comply with today’s standards.”

QIC launches $655m Eastland revamp

A Jimmy Grants souvlaki bar is among the tenants at Eastland. Photo: Jesse Marlow A Jimmy Grants souvlaki bar is among the tenants at Eastland. Photo: Jesse Marlow
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A Jimmy Grants souvlaki bar is among the tenants at Eastland. Photo: Jesse Marlow

A Jimmy Grants souvlaki bar is among the tenants at Eastland. Photo: Jesse Marlow

QIC is poised to open stage one of the redeveloped Eastland shopping centre in Ringwood at the end of October.

The $655 million revamp has increased the size of Eastland by 55 per cent to 131,000 square metres, bringing its boundary to Whitehorse Road.

The number of shops has increased by 120 to 350 and stage one will involve the first 60 of the new retailers. The opening date is set for October 29.

Fashion label Scanlan Theodore is opening its first store outside of the inner suburbs and will join Japanese store Uniqlo and Swedish retailer H&M, as well as other overseas labels Marimekko, Victoria’s Secret and Scotch & Soda.

Other new retailers include Gorman, sass & bide, Camilla, Oroton, Calibre, Jack London, Morrison, Mecca Cosmetica and Mecca Maxima, Skin and Threads, Alpha 60, Dolci Firme, Rodeo Show and Martin York.

Eastland manager Steve Edgerton said more than 40 per cent of the new brands had not been previously available in Melbourne’s suburbs beyond Armadale and Chapel Street, South Yarra.

The second stage of the project was expected to open in the middle of next year.

A new Town Square is at the heart of the project and includes a new library, called Realm, as well as an arts space and one-stop business resource hub for local businesses.

“It’s not just a shopping centre. Retail is just one activity. First and foremost we are creating a community. Town Square is both a civic and commercial space,” Mr Edgerton said.

A new eating area will include inner-city restaurants such as Huxtaburger, which started in Collingwood, a Jimmy Grants Deluxe souvlaki bar and a Mexican taqueria opened by Movida’s Frank Camorra and Andy McMahon, as well as a craft beer-focused restaurant called Hunter & Barrel.

The transformation of Ringwood’s central business district started with the completion of the EastLink toll road. It arcs from the Eastern Freeway and heads south to Frankston.

More than $1 billion of private and public investment has been pumped into Ringwood, which is 23 kilometres from the Melbourne CBD, including a $66 million railway station and a $50 million-plus swimming centre.

The scale of development is affecting property prices. The median house price has risen 15 per cent in the past year to $792,500.

Houses on big blocks are commanding high prices: a three-bedroom house on 980 square metres at 7 Bardia Street – east of Eastland – fetched $1.85 million in May. In July, a 2454-square-metre property at 59-61 Patterson Street in East Ringwood sold for $3 million. It last changed hands in 2001 for $130,000.

Not all of the sites are set for redevelopment. A classic California Bungalow on 836 square metres at 23 Arlington Street sold for $1.05 million. In 1988, it fetched $83,000.

UK Home Secretary Theresa May echoes John Howard in controversial anti-immigration speech

Scenes from a crisis: Men overwhelmed with emotion collapse onto the shore praying moments after arriving on the Greek island of Lesvos by rubber dinghy with approximately 45 refugees from Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan after a three hour journey from Turkey. Lesvos, Greece last month. Photo: Kate GeraghtyLondon: A senior United Kingdom government minister has echoed John Howard in a controversial, hard-line speech on migrants and refugees, in which she declared “we must have an immigration system that allows us to control who comes to our country”.
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“When immigration is too high… it’s impossible to build a cohesive society,” Home Secretary Theresa May told the Conservative Party conference in Manchester.

“There is no case, in the national interest, for immigration of the scale we have experienced over the last decade.”

A net total of 330,000 immigrants swelled the UK population in the year to March, almost 100,000 more than the previous year and 10,000 more than the previous peak in 2005. It included a net migration of 183,000 European Union citizens, up 53,000 from the year before.

Mrs May said the economic benefits of high immigration were “close to zero”, and it was putting pressure on health, education, transport and housing infrastructure. She proposed new, stricter asylum and migration policy and laws for the UK.

Her choice of words echoed the former n Prime Minister John Howard, who in 2001 famously declared “we will decide who comes to this country and the circumstances in which they come” in the wake of the Tampa asylum seeker crisis.

The numbers coming from Europe were “unsustainable and the rules have to change”, Mrs May said, saying there should be restrictions on their welfare benefits.

On refugees, she said “not in a thousand years” would the UK join a common European immigration and asylum policy.

Europe is in the midst of a refugee crisis, with hundreds of thousands displaced by the Syrian war and other nearby conflicts trying to make their way north and west to security.

But the crisis “can only be resolved by nation states taking responsibility themselves and protecting their own national borders”, Mrs May said.

Mrs May said she wanted to make it harder to claim asylum on British soil, and instead “offer asylum and refuge to people in parts of the world affected by conflict and oppression”. There would be regular reviews of those granted asylum, to assess whether it was safe for them to return home.

Refugees who had travelled through another “safe” country to reach Britain would get only a minimum stay of protection and would get no automatic right to settle.

The speech was welcomed in the conference hall, but criticised outside it.

Institute of Directors director general Simon Walker told the BBC he was astonished by the home secretary’s “irresponsible rhetoric and pandering to anti-immigration sentiment”.

“It is yet another example of the home secretary turning away the world’s best and brightest, putting internal party politics ahead of the country, and helping our competitor economies instead of our own,” he said

And the Confederation of British Industry’s John Cridland said immigrant workers “add hugely to the collective strength of the economy”.

Refugee activist Harry Smith Tweeted that the speech was “cruelty wrapped in ideological bile”.

In the longer term, Mrs May said that she wanted to review the international definitions of asylum and refugee status.

“To those who say we should do more, I say look at what Britain is doing for Syrians at home and in the Middle East, look at the contributions of other European countries, and think again,” she said.

“By taking a tougher approach to those who do not need our help, we can give more support to vulnerable people who are in real and urgent need of our protection.”

She also called for a crackdown on international students overstaying their visas.

Stephen Hale, Chief Executive of Refugee Action said: “The UK has a moral and a legal duty to help people in need. Everyone should have the right to claim asylum, regardless of their nationality or how they make their claim.

“The British people have made very clear that they want the UK to play our part in responding to the global refugee crisis. Closing the door to asylum applications does not achieve that.”

According to the latest government statistics, the UK had 25,771 asylum applications in the year to March 2015, a 10 per cent increase on the year before. Of those, 11,600 were granted asylum.

Immigration now regularly leads the list of ‘most important issues’ in the minds of the British public.

Around three quarters of those polled want reduced immigration, with more than half agreeing it should be reduced “a lot”.

However polls also find anti-immigration sentiment is concentrated in parts of the country with the lowest migrant populations.

As a member of the EU, the UK has limited powers to control the arrival of EU citizens. This is one of the main arguments being put forward by proponents of “Brexit” in a referendum due as early as next year.

On radio before Ms May’s speech, prime minister David Cameron said he agreed with her.

For an “integrated, successful society you have to make sure there are enough school places and that hospitals aren’t overcrowded”, he said.

But he also said he was “incredibly proud” the UK had built one of the “most successful multi-racial, multi-ethnic democracies anywhere in the world”.

To many political observers Mrs May’s speech was interpreted as early jockeying to replace Mr Cameron, who has said he will stand down before the next election. Mrs May is seen as a front-runner to replace him, alongside chancellor George Osborne and London mayor Boris Johnson.

Alex Massie, columnist at the conservative-friendly Spectator magazine, called the speech “as tawdry as it was contemptible”.

She was “pandering to the basest elements of the Tory party”, he said, basing “her pitch to lead her party on a stale and noxious concoction of tawdry nativism”.

And James Kirkup, commentator for the right-wing Telegraph newspaper, called the speech “awful, ugly, misleading, cynical and irresponsible”.

Bill Shorten welcomes Malcolm Turnbull’s greener government

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten has welcomed a greener Turnbull government. Photo: Alex EllinghausenBill Shorten has welcomed the arrival of the greener Turnbull government, declaring Labor is now prepared to accept in “good faith” signs that the Coalition will treat wind and solar energy on their merits.
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In what the opposition has billed as a landmark speech on energy policy in the lead-up to the 2016 election year, Mr Shorten has extended an olive branch to the new Prime Minister, telling him the steep drop-off in investment in renewable energy in is an international anomaly that must be fixed.

In the speech, to be delivered on Wednesday morning, Mr Shorten will say clean energy investment has risen by 8 per cent in the US, 12 per cent in Japan, and 35 per cent in China last year alone. In , however, under the Abbott government’s overtly pro-fossil fuel/anti-renewables stance, it went backwards by 35 per cent.

And what is worse, he will say, investment in large-scale renewable projects fell by a staggering 88 per cent. That saw 2 million jobs created in the renewable sector globally while ‘s clean energy sector contracted over the same period, shedding 2300 full-time positions.

“This has to change,” he will argue, according to speech notes provided.

“And perhaps – at last – the government will stop fighting Labor on this.

“Like you, I welcome the fact that the Liberal leadership no longer sees wind turbines as a horrifying blight on the landscape … a creeping menace lurking on the horizon. The muzzling of the far-right’s ideological attack dogs in the clean energy debate is long overdue, and it’s a gesture I’m prepared to accept in good faith.

“I’m hopeful our Parliament, our politics, can move past the basic, binary argument of whether renewable energy is ‘good’ or ‘bad’.”

The speech comes as Labor recalibrates its political arguments and policy presentation to suit the more popular and more forward-looking Turnbull leadership style.

After promising a 50 per cent renewable energy mix by 2030, and being slammed by the then Abbott government which said it was unworkable and unaffordable, Mr Shorten will use the speech to foreshadow what he is calling an “Electricity Modernisation Plan” that “delivers on our economy-wide emissions reduction targets; minimises the cost impacts on business and household consumers; provides opportunities for affected workers to be redeployed, retrained and supported through the transition; and helps local communities adapt to changes in key industries”.

He said the approach would be based on a “consultative and consensus building” model designed to protect investment confidence and job security.

“Above all, our priority is a managed, predictable long-term modernisation process for our electricity sector,” he will say.

He will also use the speech to confirm Labor’s commitment to an emissions trading scheme, leaving it open to the charge of preparing to revisit the carbon tax.

“Labor is committed to an emissions trading scheme – a market solution for tackling climate change,” his notes say.

“And we have also set a bold new goal for renewable energy – 50 per cent of ‘s electricity to come from renewable energy, by 2030.

“Yes, this is ambitious – but it is not impossible.

“This isn’t about recklessly dashing ahead of the rest of the world. This is a plan for to catch up and cash in on the opportunities of the Asian century.”

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Life in Brunswick points to redevelopment of Sydney Road pub and motel

Bridie O’Reilly’s is being offered to buyers as a potential five-storey development site in Brunswick. Bridie O’Reilly’s is being offered to buyers as a potential five-storey development site in Brunswick.
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Bridie O’Reilly’s is being offered to buyers as a potential five-storey development site in Brunswick.

Bridie O’Reilly’s is being offered to buyers as a potential five-storey development site in Brunswick.

Younger demographics and a rapid shift towards apartment living in Brunswick have prompted the owners of a prominent pub and a large motel on adjoining Sydney Road intersections to sell the blocks as potential development sites.

Irish-themed watering hole Bridie O’Reilly’s, which is on the corner of Sydney and Brunswick roads, is being offered to buyers as a potential five-storey development site, although it’s also likely to be pursued by hotel operators.

The pub was formerly known as the Sarah Sands Hotel.

Across the road, a sprawling complex of buildings, which is spread across nine titles between Park Street and Brunswick Road and includes the Princes Park Motor Inn and two large warehouses, is also likely to be keenly sought-after by developers.

The massive 6320-square-metre motor inn site sits opposite Princes Park at the leafy northern end of Royal Parade.

Several buildings at the front of the site are used by the Best Western motor inn to accommodate travellers while two large warehouses behind those buildings face Brunswick Road. They are leased to Rob’s Auto Electrics and Advantage Commercial Kitchens.

The site returns $700,000 in annual rental income. It is being marketed by CBRE and Colliers International, which are also selling Bridie O’Reilly’s in conjunction with Gross Waddell.

Colliers’ Guy Wells said the pub’s ground-floor lounge, dining room/nightclub and outdoor courtyard would be sold with one year remaining on the lease and the option of a further five-year term.

Chinan authors earn only $12,900 from their writing, a new report says

Writing is no guarantee of earning a decent income. Photo: istock
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Writing is no guarantee of earning a decent income. Photo: istock

Writing is no guarantee of earning a decent income. Photo: istock

Writing is no guarantee of earning a decent income. Photo: istock

Professor David Throsby

Professor David Throsby

Professor David Throsby

Professor David Throsby

It’s very different if you win the Miles Franklin Literary award or the Man Booker, but most n authors earn only $12,900 from their writing, according to a new study from Macquarie University that surveyed more than 1000 book authors.

Cultural economist Professor David Throsby, who also undertakes regular research on artists’ incomes for the Council, said writers averaged $12,900 from creative work, $14,000 from associated work such as editorial or teaching creative writing and about $20,000 from non-arts work.

“What we’re interested in, of course, is the creative income and that is always some relative proportion of the total because not all that many writers make a living out of full-time writing,” he said. “The producing of original text – whether it’s fiction or non-fiction – is less than a third on average of their total income, And that’s true pretty much across the board of artists generally.”

The report found that new technology had had a significant impact, with more than 80 per cent of fiction writers saying they had changed the way their work was published and promoted.

Professor Throsby said online publishing had been the most significant change – more than 33 per cent of fiction writers had self-published their books – but there was also use of social media to promote the work and engage directly with readers.

“Certainly some writers couldn’t get their work published by traditional book publishers, but some people see it as easier and more direct to relate to their work and their readers by publishing books themselves and promoting books themselves. The thing about self-publishing and selling yourself on line is that you don’t have the intermediaries there.”

The report said most writers were women. They comprised 66 per cent of literary fiction authors, 75 per cent of genre fiction writers and 90 per cent of children’s authors. “The fact that women make up a smaller proportion of scholarly and education writers reflects the gender bias of universities,” Professor Throsby said.

That more than half of book authors were aged between 40 and 59 was indicative of the time it took for a career to be established, he added.

Writers of genre fiction – romance or crime – were the ones making the most of new technologies and getting more benefit. “There is more money to be made. Literary fiction doesn’t sell all that well in terms of making lots of money, but the motivation of writers is not necessarily to make money.”

The n Book Industry: Authors, Publishers and Readers in a Time of Change is a three-year project. The next report will survey publishers.

Universities China calls for radical rethink on higher education policy

Universities chair Barney Glover. Photo: Peter StoopThe peak body representing ‘s universities will attempt to steer the higher education debate away from fee deregulation by calling for a “radical” policy re-think based on increased public funding for research and development.
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Universities chair Barney Glover will release the organisation’s pre-election policy blueprint in a speech to the National Press Club on Wednesday that does not mention either fee deregulation or higher student fees.

Instead, his speech calls for an end to the “intolerable” uncertainty universities have faced since the government announced its plan to deregulate university fees in last year’s budget.

Professor Glover will warn n universities are currently caught in a “funding limbo … without a structural and strategic vision for the coming decades”.

New Education Minister Simon Birmingham has said he is “all ears” for ideas on how to create a more vibrant higher education system.

The speech marks a significant break from the past 18 months by stressing the case for renewed public funding in universities so they can help drive innovation and economic growth.

“Notwithstanding the recognised private benefit that might accrue to individual students, universities have a public purpose,” Professor Glover will say.

Professor Glover, who is also vice-chancellor of Western Sydney University, will call for a “radical re-think and commitment from government to create the conditions for prosperity to flourish”.

Noting that Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has made innovation the “central organising principle” of his cabinet, Universities will urge the government to establish: a major technology and innovation program – similar to the United Kingdom’s Catapult centres – to link universities with businessesan “Innovation Board” including government, industry, university and research community leaders to drive an integrated national approach to research and innovationa “Student Innovation Fund” to encourage university students to be more entrepreneuriala premium tax concession rate for businesses collaborating with universities on R&D

Britain’s Catapult centres promote collaboration between researchers and businesses in fields such as high-end manufacturing, cell therapy and renewable energy.

New research by Deloitte Access Economics, commissioned by Universities , put the value of university research at $160 billion a year, equivalent to 10 per cent of gross domestic roduct and more than the entire value of the mining industry.

The group also notes has plummeted from six to 24th out of 25 developed countries for the share of GDP devoted to tertiary education over the past two decades.

Professor Glover stresses that universities should not be funded only for their economic benefits, but to foster creativity and the pursuit of knowledge – including in the humanities.

Research and innovation should be valued as much for their contribution to social wellbeing as economic growth and prosperity, he will say.

Earlier this year Professor Glover told Fairfax Media that fee deregulation was not essential for to have a high-quality university system.

“Deregulation is at one end of the spectrum; at the other end is the system as it is now,” he said.

“We are going to continue to engage in a debate about what the appropriate balance is.”

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One in three diagnosed cancers in China could have been prevented: study

Obesity or a poor diet were a cause of more than 10,000 preventable cancers in 2010, according to Cancer Council-commissioned research. Photo: Steve CassellAlmost one third of all cancers diagnosed in could have been prevented, new research has found.
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The Cancer Council-commissioned research found an estimated 37,000 cancer cases in 2010 were caused by factors such as smoking, UV exposure, alcohol and obesity.

The study, published in The n and New Zealand Journal of Public Health, estimated that 33 per cent of all cancers in men and 31 per cent of those in women were avoidable.

Lead researcher David Whiteman said the results showed had a large burden of preventable cancers.

“When we have more knowledge and more data in the future, I expect the proportion of preventable cancers will be even higher,” he said.

Professor Whiteman, of the Brisbane-based QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute, said obesity’s role as a cancer risk factor was becoming better understood.

“When we redo this analysis in five-10 years I’m confident there will be more cancers known to be caused by obesity,” he said. “The research is still being done now so the risks associated with obesity will be estimated more precisely.”

He said obese women produced more oestrogen, which could lead to higher breast cancer risks. In obese people of both sexes tissue inflammation could result in cells becoming cancerous in certain organs.

The research linked 3917 cancer cases to obesity, including one in five kidney cancers, one in 10 colon cancers and 8 per cent of all post-menopausal breast cancers. An additional 7000 cases were linked to a poor diet.

The researchers estimated the number of preventable cancer cases based on the proportion of the population that met each risk criteria. The calculations also took into account differing levels of risk (such as cigarettes smoked per day) or multiple factors, Professor Whiteman said.

Smoking was linked to 15,525 cancer cases, including four out of five lung cancers, three out of five throat and oesophageal cancers, and one in five stomach, liver and kidney cancers.

Cancer Council chief executive Sanchia Aranda said the research should encourage ns to be positive about minimising their risk of being diagnosed with preventable cancers.

“It’s time to bust the myth that everything gives you cancer and do more to reduce the risks that we know cause cancer,” Professor Aranda said.

She said people were confused by fad diets and conflicting health advice, but that a diet rich in vegetables, fruit and whole grains helps to cut cancer risk.

According to n Institute of Health and Welfare data, two out of three n adults and one in four children are overweight or obese.

ACT Heart Foundation chief executive Tony Stubbs said small changes to lifestyle and eating habits could make a big difference.

“Smoking is one of the key things that threaten heart disease and cancer so people who smoke should be seeking assistance to quit, although there are other factors such as being physically inactive and overweight,” he said.

“We need to make sure we have 30 minutes of physical activity a day and are getting two services of fruit and five serves of vegetables, while also reducing the amount of processed food and drink we consume.”

 – with Henry Belot

St Kilda Road fringe site sets new record as city grows

An overseas developer has purchased 596 St Kilda Road, one of the area’s last low-rise blocks. An overseas developer has purchased 596 St Kilda Road, one of the area’s last low-rise blocks.
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An overseas developer has purchased 596 St Kilda Road, one of the area’s last low-rise blocks.

An overseas developer has purchased 596 St Kilda Road, one of the area’s last low-rise blocks.

A Singaporean developer has snapped up one of the last remaining low-rise blocks on St Kilda Road, paying a record land price believed to be about $25 million.

The 19 owners of the 1940s apartment complex at 596 St Kilda Road are understood to have scored a huge premium as the buyer turned from the planning uncertainty in the CBD to the city fringe.

The 1804-square metre site is flanked by high-rise apartments and opposite the Victorian Deaf Education Institute.

The deal was negotiated by CBRE agents Josh Rutman​, Mark Wizel​ and Kiran Pillai​, along with Gross Waddell’s Raoul Salter and Michelle Hui.

Mr Salter, who refused to confirm the details of the transaction, said there were multiple offers for the site with several at about the same price point because St Kilda Road was of intrinsic interest to developers.

“It doesn’t matter if you’re on the east or west side of St Kilda Road, it has unique aspects – Albert Park Lake on one side and Fawkner Park to the east – and interest continues because there are only a few sites left on the strip,” Mr Salter said.

Mr Rutman said “there has been a spike in appetite for development sites and investments in the fringe areas which provide certainty”.

Overseas developers were shocked by the surprise rules announced by Planning Minister Richard Wynne last month, he said.

But City of Melbourne lord mayor Robert Doyle defended some of the changes to an audience of city developers and investors at a seminar held by CBRE last week.

Cr Doyle said the new rules about setbacks and plot ratios were more important now residential projects were being built in the city and the aim was to improve amenity for residents and maintain the value of buildings.

“I’m not sure that mandated rules that are strict are the way to go but we do want some,” he said.

“If you go back to when building was predominantly commercial, then setbacks were not so crucial but this is where we are getting the pushback about building envelopes,” Cr Doyle said.

“This means everyone can have value not just the first to market. It means one developer cannot spoil the value for others.”

He preferred innovative design and open space to strict building regulations for height-to-site ratios and the vexed question of minimum apartment sizes.

Mr Doyle said 2700 new apartments were built in the city last year but 5500 were expected to be built every year for the next three years – but 96 per cent of the apartments were one and two-bedrooms.

“It’s too many of a particular stock, even though that’s where the demand is now. I’m not sure it’s where the demand will be in the future,” he said.

According to research by Roy Morgan, the number of residents in the city had increased to 349,000 from 291,000 in 2010. That is more than the number of city workers which have increased to 325,000 from 251,000.

While Cr Doyle stressed how important the CBD is to Melbourne, he also pointed to the huge amount of land available for development on its fringes. Fishermans Bend, E-Gate and the Arden-Macaulay industrial precinct of North Melbourne constitute 757 hectares.

“I doubt there’s a bigger urban renewal area anywhere in the world in such close proximity to the CBD,” he said.

“But it should not be done quickly,” he said, citing the problems encountered in other parts of Melbourne where transport infrastructure had not kept up with residential development.

The areas around the new Melbourne Metro railway stations – Arden, Parkville, City North and South – would likely become new development areas.