"In the beginning"


The views expressed in this blog are not necessarily the views of the blog management, (on the other hand, they are not necessarily not the views of the blog management).

No effort has been made to stay within the bounds of the truth in this blog as it has always been the view of the management that the truth should never be allowed to stand in the way of a good story.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Water restrictions

Update on previous post.
It seems that at least some overseas readers didn't understand the "Great Australian Yarn"... sorry about that, one of the MANY colloquialisms used for the sex act here is Root which sounds the same as route, hope that clears that up.... Oh one other thing for Puss in boots.. YES.

Now for todays post, Australia is in the grip of an 11 year drought, our worst on record having just eclipsed the 10 year previous record holder (1936 - 1946) now obviously this does not mean that it hasn't rained for 11 years, in fact some areas have had floods during this period. It is best defined by; There has been SUBSTANTIALLY less rainfall than normal, because of the arid center to Australia the cities and towns are located around the green fringe of our continent.
With the exception of the monsoonal belt across the top (North) of Australia, which is sparsely populated anyway, this fringe is where the drought has been centered. Water storage levels in the main are at an all time low, this has meant the enforcement of some fairly stringent water restrictions, "Save Water, shower with a friend" has been around for a long time, I must admit I have found this can lead to heavier water use if the friendship is a strong one, unlikely in the case of our Prime Minister and his Deputy depicted in the cartoon though.
The water restrictions mentioned have been introduced over time in grades of severity through Grade 1 to the one about to be applied Grade 5 without going into details Grade 5 promises some very severe restrictions on water use indeed.

Can you imagine the difficulty in promoting the "Shower with a friend" idea under the conditions depicted in this illustration!!!!!
Not to make light of a very serious situation, we are currently investing billions of dollars into alternatives to the way we now obtain and handle our water resources, these schemes range from huge desalination plants, treatment plants for waste water, a net work of inter-connected pipes to channel water to areas most in need and also as feed lines to allow the mixing of treated sewage water into the dams. There are relatively minor schemes like subsidies to allow people to install rainwater catchment tanks to allow for garden watering, which will be banned under Grade 5 restrictions.
The attention grabber at present is the use of treated water as drinking water, on a daily basis there is someone on TV offering a small cup of treated water to all and sundry for their opinion on taste and acceptability.

The situation in this
cartoon may well be
the story of our future
(please click to enlarge)

This map will give at least a simplistic view of the Australia I have
been speaking of.
To pad it out just a little, there is a low mountain range that runs
from the top (north) to bottom along the eastern side, this varies
from only a few miles from the coast up to several hundred miles
inland in other parts, top to bottom BTW is about 4000 miles.
And to this time nobody has bitten the bullet on channeling water
from the north, which in the summer "Wet" season floods vast
areas with water that just runs into the ocean, far less than half
of this runoff water could supply our total needs.
On the east coast the only river system of any consequence that
flows to the inland (west) is the Murray/Darling river system
which very broadly speaking flows along the eastern edge of the
orange (arid) section of the map, all the other rivers run short
distances and discharge into the ocean.

I am leaving on my trip across to SA and then WA tomorrow so posting
will be on a when able to basis for the next few weeks, I have saved in
draft some posts which cover my Dads life so hopefully I will at least be
able to post those as well as some travel news... I know you can hardly


Hale McKay said...

I didn't realize that Australia's drought problems had been going on for so long!

Enjoy your trip.

Looking forward to reading more about your dad.

Miss Cellania said...

OK, I ad received that last cartoon in the mail, but didn't understand the story behind it. Thanks!

Have a great trip!

wazza said...

Gidday Peter,

On my last post you mentioned that "you KNEW everything". Youse telling porky pies, as I know you didn't know the one about "The quick brown fox" 'cos yu had already told me before that you didn't know this one.
Hava great trip Peter, enjoy both weddings and say hello to your family for me.

Merle said...

Hi Peter ~~ Have a safe trip and take great care. There are some idiots on the roads. Please give my love to
all the family and I hope all goes well for the weddings and also your trip. Guess you will see a hell of a lot of brown paddocks, as I doubt there is any green left anywhere.
Certainly not around here!!
Safe driving, Love, Merle.

Val said...

Hi Peter,

I too wish you a safe journey and am looking forward to reading about your dad.

Jeanette said...

Hi Peter
Had a grin at your water restriction cartoons, Were still on stage one here in Yarra. say hi to all the family,and have a great time at the 2 weddings. look forward to seeing all the photo's and catching up again.
Take care on those outback roads,Stay safe, see you on your return trip, look forward to seeing all the photo's and catching up again.Jan

Jack K. said...

Peter, bon voyage. Drive safely. Enjoy the weddings. Look forward to future postings.

Cliff Morrow said...

I shall wait with patience for pics of the weddings. Thanks for the story of the continued drought. Stateside they would blame that on Pres Bush and his administration. What caused it down there.
I read with interest the cartoon of the guy taking a bath with the fan. We have some healty winds here in Nebraska and that's a technique you learn to avoid as a lad here on the farm.

Walker said...

The water will get scarcer and scarcer as the climate changes. Living in Canada looks good as water goes but we are getting less and less rain and snow as the years goes by to and they have predicted that in 50 years the tundra will start becoming a desert.
TYime we looked at how we live a little more seriously.

Have a safe trip :)

LZ Blogger said...

Peter ~ Sorry about the drought conditions down under... it reminds me of my days in California. In fact many things about the East Coast of Australia remind me of the West Coast of the States (only upside down)! Sydney reminds me of San Francisco, Surfers Paradise reminds me of Newport Beach (Orange County/LA) and Brisbane reminds me of San Diego. As for showering with a friend... I guess that depends on WHO THE FRIEND IS! ~ jb///

Raggedy said...

Cat 5 sounds awful! I hope that you get the rain you need to pull you out of drought conditions.
Woooooohoooooooo on your trip!
Be safe,

c'est moi said...

Yup. The Australian drought is international news now. I think the #$^& hit the fan when people in (was it?) Sydney were unwittingly fed recycled sewage as drinking water a short while ago.

I, too, will be looking forward to your travel blog.

Jamie Dawn said...

I look forward to hearing about your travels!

I can remember having bad droughts in California when I was growing up, but not a ten year one.
That guy peeing into the fan is FUNNY!
I don't think I'll be ordering any purified sewage of any kind, no matter how good it tastes. YUCKY!
I wish you all the rain needed to bring you out of the drought.