A temperature of 47°C (116.6F) is recorded in the remote outback town of Oodnadatta, South Australia, marking Australia's hottest day on record with average temperatures of 40.9°C, according to the Bureau of Meteorology.
Sources: Sky News
Sources: Sky News
A magnitude 5.8 earthquake strikes the Alpine National Park in Victoria, Australia, with tremors felt throughout the state and in parts of New South Wales, the Australian Capital Territory, South Australia and Tasmania. Some buildings in Melbourne are damaged but no casualties are reported.
The World Heritage Committee rejects calls from UNESCO to list the Great Barrier Reef as a World Heritage Site "in danger" due to the effects of anthropogenic climate change and ocean acidification, in line with scientific consensus on the Reef's health. Australia lobbied a number of oil-rich countries, including Russia and Saudi Arabia, to reject the proposal.
UNESCO recommends changing the World Heritage status of the Great Barrier Reef to "in danger" and urges "accelerated action" from Australia. Australian Environment Minister Sussan Ley says that she "strongly opposes" the recommendation, arguing that it was politically motivated and not following normal process.
JAXA space probe "Hayabusa2" delivers the first ever subsurface asteroid samples to Earth. The capsule, containing a small amount of material from Apollo asteroid 162173 Ryugu, landed in the Australian outback.
South Australian Premier Steven Marshall announces a six-day "circuit breaker" lockdown across the state beginning at midnight due to a growing number of COVID-19 cases in Adelaide. Unlike previous lockdowns in Australia, outside exercise and takeaway food will be prohibited. The lockdown will be followed by eight days of "lesser restrictions".
An 8 meter high fire ignites accidentally next to Adelaide Oval after the 9pm New Year's Eve fireworks in Adelaide, South Australia. This comes following major controversy over the New Year's firework displays across Australia in response to ongoing bushfires.
Voters in the Australian states of Tasmania and South Australia go to the polls for state elections. The Liberal Party led by Will Hodgman have won government in the Tasmanian election while the South Australian election is too close to call.