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March 5, 2024

What’s Nu in COVID variants? Highlighted need for stronger Australian contribution

Latest News

They’re wild and they’re back!

Wild Marmalade return to the Beach Hotel this week for a free Sunday session – if you don’t know Wild Marmalade then you are in for a treat. The world’s original didgeridoo and drum band certainly know how to spin the dial to 11 and get the high vibes rolling. They will be joined by Tijuana Cartel front man and guitar virtuoso, Paul A George; this is sure to be an epic afternoon of groove.

Other News

Fire danger period to end early for Northern Rivers

Tweed, Byron, Ballina, Kyogle, Lismore, Richmond Valley and Clarence Valley are among the local government areas (LGAs) that will see an early end to  the Bush Fire Danger Period.

Weekly fun run in Ocean Shores

A free community run in Ocean Shores is happening every Monday morning, and organiser Giovanni Ginocchio encourages everyone to get involved. 

How to supply water to the increasing population?

It is predicted that the next 40 years will see the demand for water increase by 50 per cent in the local government areas that Rous County Council supply with water.

Bluesfest puts the Brotherhood back together 

To say that a lot has happened since Brotherhood of the Blues last took the stage at Bluesfest in 2019 would be a pretty massive understatement.

Incoming holiday letting rules discriminatory, say residents 

Byron Bay resident, Catherine Henniker, told The Echo she lives in one of the parts of the town that has been deemed ‘365 nights for short-term holiday lets’, under new state government rules to be introduced in September.

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Photo End COVID For All campaign.

According to the End COVID For All campaign the emergence of a new coronavirus variant in Botswana underlines the need for Australia to step up its contribution to co-oridnated global efforts to prevent the virus’ spread and mutation.

The End COVID For All campaign was initiated by Micah Australia, the Australian Council for International Development (ACFID) and the Australian Global Health Alliance.

It has since grown to a coalition of over 25,000 individuals and 200+ organisations made up of businesses, faith groups, unions, health bodies and more.

End COVID For All

An End COVID For All release says the variant, which will likely be named ‘Nu’ following a WHO expert group meeting today, contains more than 30 changes to the spike protein that is the main target of the body’s immune responses. Scientists are concerned it could evade infection-blocking antibodies.

Spokesperson for the End COVID For All campaign, the Reverend Tim Costello, said authorities are still establishing a clear understanding of this variant but it should shake off any sense of complacency that we have defeated COVID-19. ‘This virus has consistently reminded us that we are all biologically connected. COVID doesn’t end for anyone until it ends for everyone.

COVID a constantly evolving challenge

‘COVID is a constantly evolving challenge. There is no place for false comfort or triumphalism.’

After first being identified in Botswana this month the variant has also turned up in travellers to Hong Kong from South Africa. Scientists trying to understand whether it can evade immune responses triggered by vaccines and whether it causes more or less severe disease than other variants do.

Best tool is ‘widespread vaccination’

Reverend Costello said the best tool available to the world right now was widespread vaccination. The Australian government needs to step up its efforts. ‘The current vaccination rates in poor countries is dire and the Australian Government must do more by committing its fair share of financial contributions and through vaccine sharing.

‘Vaccines reduce transmission, as well as minimising the risk of severe illness.
Reverend Costello said Australia can and must make an additional $250 million to COVAX, the international vaccine program.

‘Also a further $50 million towards addressing vaccine hesitancy.’

Recent stories, information and updates regarding COVID-19

COVID-19 update for New South Wales

Let’s not forget that Covid-19 is still a big issue in our community with 31,935 cases reported across Australia in the last week – an average of 4,562 cases per day.


Five graphs you need to see before the Global Carbon Budget...

The Global Carbon Budget is about to be refreshed, giving the world a critical insight into how efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions are (or are not) progressing.


Public transport mask mandate to end

Masks will no longer be mandatory on public transport from tomorrow, Wednesday 21 September.


NSW Police: be COVID-vigilant at Splendour in the Grass

SW Police are urging festival-goers at this weekend’s music festival to celebrate in a safe and responsible manner, whilst also being aware of COVID-Safety measures.


COVID-19 update for the NNSWLHD – May 23

The Northern NSW Local Health District reports that to 4pm yesterday, Sunday May 22, there were 40 COVID-19 positive patients in hospital in Northern NSW, with one of these in ICU.


AEC says COVID voters can phone from home

The AEC says that voters who have recently tested positive for COVID-19 will be able to phone in their vote in the federal election.


COVID-19 update: May 16

The Northern NSW Local Health District says that to 4pm yesterday, 15 May, 384 new cases of COVID-19 were confirmed in the District, including 82 positive PCR tests and 302 positive rapid antigen tests.


It’s National Volunteer Week

Volunteering Australia says volleys are the backbone of the country in times of crisis and emergency.


COVID-19 update: May 9

Today there are 41 COVID-19 positive patients in hospital in Northern NSW, with none of these in ICU.


COVID-19 update: May 6

The Northern NSW Local Health District (NNSWLHD) reports that there are 37 COVID-19 positive patients in hospital in Northern NSW, with one of these in ICU.


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  1. Don’t worry folks, they are running out of Greek alphabet letters, so hopefully this will all be over soon. We’re up to the new, I meant “nu” strain, so only eleven letters left, Lmao.
    2 weeks to flatten the curve failed. One jab failed. 2 jabs just doesn’t last, cause the unvaccinated are the problem, and are pushing he reason the jab doesn’t work, so we will go with mandates, border closures, QR tracking codes, privelidge not quite freedom passports and lockdowns, even if your jabbed. Keep your chin nappies…

    To all those citizens freaking out…

    Don’t worry, Greg Hunt bought 200 million doses, I meant boosters. Maybe if you get one every 4 weeks, we can stop it?
    2, 3, 4, 5, is just not gonna cut it. Get your spike levels up folks, it’s the only way.
    Once you get to 14 doses, I meant boosters(That’s about how many 200 million doses works out to be for the elligable population), we will be able to get back to normal.
    Except for the chin nappies…
    They will be needed for the foreseeable future…


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They’re just a Teenage Fanclub, baby

Teenage Fanclub will return to Australia in March performing their first live shows down under since 2019. The renowned Glasgow five-piece – led by founding members Norman Blake and Raymond McGinley, with drummer Francis Macdonald, bassist Dave McGowan and keyboardist Euros Childs – will perform in Byron Bay on Tuesday, 12 March. The tour celebrates the band’s upcoming 12th studio album, Nothing Lasts Forever – set for release in September.

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