View Full Version : What's up in the land of OZ (drought)

11-28-2002, 12:07 PM
You folks running out of water? I'd heard it was dry your way, but how bad is it?


Wild Dingo
11-28-2002, 01:10 PM
Yep mate its as dry as a dead dogs donger in most parts of Aussie... no rain or no where enough its makin for a real disaster for the grain producers and killin of stock due to no water or feed... fellas are doin it real tough in the bush mate.

A bunch of celebs led by country singer Lee Kernigan have set up whats being called FarmAid and every dollar gathered is given directly to the farmers who need it including all proceeds from concerts record sales and murchandising for it... A worthy cause? Too flamin right its a worthy cause!

About the sharks well weve here in the West {that article was from the east} had a couple of sightings of white pointers in the Peel Estuary up beyond the Murray River... not that far I dont suppose but far enough for locals to feel safe and go swimmin with their hoons... and its coming up for summer which means beach river water... so its a worry.

Over here we're on strict water restrictions and have been for a couple of months now... I think the eastern states went on them a month or so ago but I could be wrong there... Weve had several of our major feeder dams closed due to extremely low water levels Waroona and Dwellingup dams for two Harvey dam is closing this week... well okay let me clarify that a bit "we" meaning home owners cause we are the biggest water wasters of the lot of course... builders and local councils dont come into it nor the state and federal governent agencies that leave sprinklers going day and night without a care in the world oh no dont worry about them fellas... but hell put the home owners onto restrictions of watering gardens only for an hour in the evening 2 days per week... and theyre putting up the price of water shortly just in time for summer... there are even mutterings of putting some sort of metering checks in place to control how much water a household uses go past a certain figure and bam your hit with a fine!... now aint that grand?? :rolleyes:

And I bet the buggars make it for a family of to adults and 2.5 hoons!!! damn Im gonna have fines comin outta my kazzooo this year!!... sigh

Now there was tabled in Federal parliment a few years back by polititian Earnie Bridge an idea to run a pipeline from Lake Argyle in the Kimberlies to Perth and beyond... Lake Argyle and the Kimberley water basin has enough water to last Perth and all capital cities for several hundred years so the experts say... so sounds a great idea what with high unemployment and water restrictions... but are they considering it? ****e no!!! gawd do something intelligent? not on your sweet fanny adamns we wont! so its restrictions and miles of yabbering by so called experts polititians posturing wannabes of all persuasions clamoring and bleating... and still nothing done! I mean this is as Earnie himself said an idea with potential but just one idea there are others!... sigh bloody mob of galahs the lot of em! :rolleyes:

For me its the bushfires that worry me and its already started over east... it will start here shortly then its all hands on decks!

Take it easy

Phil Young
11-28-2002, 11:35 PM
Incredibly dry in most parts. I flew from Sydney to Adelaide in about July, midwinter, across some of our best grain country, and it was dry, brown and barren all across, should have been beautiful green fields that time of year. Some areas in South Australia had enough rain to get a crop, and prices are up, so they were lookiing good, then it pissed down the other day, just as they were starting to harvest ( I just re-read that-pissed down means rained a lot) so they're pretty well buggered too now. Its gonna be a huge bushfire season, as Dingo points out. Not to worry though.

11-28-2002, 11:42 PM
It was so dry here in Connecticut this past summer the trout were getting ticks. Seems to have moistened up a bit since then though.

11-28-2002, 11:55 PM
Down in the SE corner near the coast the rainfall has been average and were still green. Our turn will come about Feb/March when all the growth dries out. Our local bush fire brigades have had their turn north of Sydney already to give the locals some relief and there are 3 skycranes on lease in the country to help out. A fair number of our fires will be deliberately or carelessly lit again this year, it's a major problem. We've had 6 dry years and one of Victorias big dams will have problems now if it fills too rapidly, earth wall wiers crack and leak if they dry out completely. I was part of an SES unit in 1982/3, the lasttime we had conditions like this. Lets hope we are lucky!

11-29-2002, 08:45 AM
"How dry wuz it...?"

"When it finally rained and the ponds filled up,
adult frogs drowned because they'd never learned to swim..."

11-29-2002, 09:40 PM
Just north of here, in Bordertown, it's that dry that they've had to close two lanes of the swimmin' pool!

Wild Wassa
11-29-2002, 10:55 PM
How dry is it? The snakes are looking for water. So dry, ... snakes are being found in swimming pools. There are snake warnings here in the ACT, at the moment. I've only seen snake warnings once or twice before, for suburbia. The homes up against the woodlands are coping their fair share.


[ 11-29-2002, 11:02 PM: Message edited by: Wild Wassa ]

11-30-2002, 01:43 AM
Well, mind the houses falling out of clouds and the little girl in the red slippers AND her little dog ;)

11-30-2002, 03:41 AM
:eek: the only really bad snakes you've got over your way have the letters "M" and "P" after their names!

11-30-2002, 09:15 AM
"M&P"? = Monty python?

"g'day Bruce! Meet Bruce..."

12-02-2002, 01:35 AM
Yes, we are having a rotten drought. This is not an uncommon occurance in Australia, but this is very severe 'once in a hundred years' event. The last of this severity was 1902 - 1904 !! Hows that for symmetry or what !

At the risk of getting the Dingo yarping at me, the story about the sharks is crap - you are far more likely of being hit by a bus crossing the road.
Dingo is also wrong about Ernie Bridge, he was a State Member of Parliment for West Australia and if I recall correctly, the first of part aboriginal descent. But Ernie, along with a lot of others got it wrong about the water rescouces of this country. By rapidly increasing the urban population you can ruin a whole river ecosystem, blow the national budget and if used for agriculture after clearing the native vegitation, the salinity problems of the rising water table trashs the land.

Cost of water ?? Its ridiculously cheap and we as a society waste it. Charge more, particularly for irrigated agricultual use, and it will be used more wisely. (Imagine trying to get that though our respective farm lobbies !).

Sympathy for farmers ? For the indivdual hardship, yes. For the collective cock up they have made of the land in the last 200 hundred years, NO!! Overcropping, overgrazing, aggressive land clearing, salinity, erosion; you name it, its been done and in many instances still being done (Big Cotton for example) . As we say here, farmers want to 'capitalise their profits and socialise their losses'. If I had stuffed up in my bussiness and ignored an entirely forseeable event (such as the drought) and went broke, I don't think they would be holding any benefit concerts.

This is a beautiful country and despite the aformentioned is worth a visit. Come sometime.


Wild Dingo
12-02-2002, 06:49 AM
Okay... Lion responds mmmmm... Earnie... I will agree I was to a degree wrong in that he was a West Aussie State MP but I was also under the impression that he was also a federal one for at least a time just prior to his retirement... in fact Im rather flamin sure of that... but never mind... Ive been known to be wrong :eek: ;)

Water from the kimberlies?... aaaahhhh well see this is where the problem of some of yous eastern staters sometimes feelin so damn secure and superior with yourselves kicks in... no I shouldnt say that as most Ive met are able to at least see something from another angle other than their own little peice of Australia and not project their own experiences in their small corner as the experiences of the whole of this country...

But I digress...

Did they not bring a gas pipeline down from the North West? ahhh yes they did!!... how do I know cause I worked on the flamin thing!... Now could they have bought a water pipeline down at the same time following the same route?... saving both time and money increasing work opportunities along the way... along with conserving localized Perth waters... sure could have!... but did they? ****e no!!... MPs both here and in Federal parliment are so notoriously short sighted when it comes to such things as a commodity such as water that it surprises me they can aim at the porcelain in morning with any potential of successfully hittin the damn wet puddle of stuff in the bottom of the bowl!...

But again I digress they didnt do it... simple fact and as I recall from my Western Australian history learning all those years ago... the same pathetic and short sighted ignorant attitudes and statements came flying out when old man C.Y. O'Connor decided to build the water pipeline to Kalgoorlie too... but it worked and is working even now!!

I wont take issue with you mate as you seem to think you know the ins and outs of a ducks butt about issues of Western Australia so thats cool I will stand aside to the wiser all knowing lion and not begin to "yarping"... no worries

Originally posted by Lion
At the risk of getting the Dingo yarping at me, the story about the sharks is crap - you are far more likely of being hit by a bus crossing the road.

Now did I ever say otherwise? What I did say was..

Originally posted by Wild Dingo
About the sharks well weve here in the West {that article was from the east} had a couple of sightings of white pointers in the Peel Estuary up beyond the Murray River... not that far I dont suppose but far enough for locals to feel safe and go swimmin with their hoons... and its coming up for summer which means beach river water... so its a worry.

Now that was and is a fact... White pointers have been seen in the Murray River system south of Perth on more than 1 occasion in recent months!... It is a worry given that its now summer and people are swimming crabbing sailing and generally in and on the waters of the Murray River Serpentine Rivers and Peel Estuary System which is fed directly from the ocean through the Dawsville Cut... And it is a worry!... no I didnt and wouldnt say that one has more chance of being taken by a shark in local waters than being hit by a flamin bus and never would that is your terminology not mine so dont imply such...

Now I agree with this statement made by you... but you offer no logical manner of addressing the issue of the very serious lack of water in the metro and outer metro areas of this State which is what I was talking about... I spoke to Western Australias situation simply because I have no practical experience or distinct knowledge of the situation in the Eastern States I chose not to make comment regarding their situation I spoke to our situation here and allow others more local to the Eastern States situation to talk to that situation... Your comments are very similar to those made by many a short sighted and ignorant politiitan since Earnie tabled the pipeline proposal all those years ago... at least Earnie attempted to come up with some sort of workable option to what then and is presently the situation...

This I agree with... but whats the answer? presently Perth and its outer metro areas are growing at ever increasing levels and the water tables are going down in increasingly alarming levels but still the ignorants on the hill continue the line of increase the population increase building increase... so whats the answer lion?

Originally posted by Lion
By rapidly increasing the urban population you can ruin a whole river ecosystem, blow the national budget and if used for agriculture after clearing the native vegitation, the salinity problems of the rising water table trashs the land.

Sooo other than bringing water down from a resource such as the Argyle region in the Kimberlies... introducing new desalination plants to tap the ocean... tapping and treating the vast artesian basin below Kalgoorlie what is the answer?...

Anyway mate you know best... and well Im not into arguing about this... our situation here is quite obviously different to yours so no worries this end...

You think and do as you do and so will I... whos right or wrong?... Im here and your there... mmmm must be you right? :rolleyes:

Take it easy

[ 12-02-2002, 07:04 AM: Message edited by: Wild Dingo ]

12-03-2002, 02:28 AM
Sorry Dingo to ruin your perception but I am WA born and bred, have family in Perth, Kalgoorlie and Geralton and visit regularly (last there 2 weeks ago). Have been to Kunnunnura etc..You know what I saw on the flight on the way over that made me profoundly depressed? - the saltpans on the eastern wheatbelt that are destroying the country from the water table rising. This is nationally Australia's most challanging enviromental issue.

C.Y. O'conner was agueably a genius, but different times call for different solutions. Relative to the poulation there was then seemingly plenty of water. I think he might have proposed something different a hundred years later to solve the current dilemma but I guess we will never know.

Pipelines - don't know that much 'bount the detailed engineering but... Kimberleys is probably twice as far as Port Headland (+1000 Miles?), bigger diameter required (in fact one of the proposls was for a huge open trench) and a big pumps etc. Pondage along the way would also probably be required.

Now it might be economically viable if you charged as much per equivalent kilo/mj as gas - fat chance any time soon - but it could conceivably occur one day.

That of course would also fix the pipeline economics as water consuption would drop so dramatically you wouldn't need it !

There you go, we fixed the problem between us !


Wild Dingo
12-03-2002, 03:53 AM
HANG ON A TIC!!!... No we flamin didnt!!!

You were on the right track though and if you wander through the archives you'll find this was discussed at some length some time back...

Originally posted by Lion
in fact one of the proposls was for a huge open trench

That is the best idea ever floated!! true fact!

Why? well we could then propose to make it wide enough to take two boats going in opposite directions and then make it long enough to go right the way around Aussie and there yer go... bobs yer uncle! instant interior interstate waterways!!! flamin brilliant!! can build in diversionary dams and desalination plants tapping into the artesian basins and ocean along the way and there goes the countries water problems! {added benifit would be one could sail around and do a interior tour of Aussie from the boat!! what a tourist boon!! :D }

As I said this was discussed before by members of this wonderously intellectually superior motley crew of men and womens who love woodenboats {and others!}...

And I for one am glad you have come on board to assist with this grand plan!...

so now we have it... there will be me and you doin the West Aussie leg to South Aussie... whereby Phil Young and Doorstop will take over leading to Victoria... where old Mike of Field and Skuthorp will get into it and Wassa in Camberra will jump in and lend a hand up to the NSW border... whereby TonyH assisted ably by your good self {cause you are now a traitor to West Aussie and live in that place over there so you need a lesson and well two lots of major diggin wont hurt yer mate lets consider it a tiny bit of excersize shall we? me? I dont need so much!! HA!! tongue.gif } to the Queensland border... whereby our energetic Bernadette and David Hedger will arc up and get it dug along with help from another Warren in that state...

Now all we gotta do is find some yobbos up in the Territory and Kimberlies to do those legs... oh and someone muckin about around Alice Springs may like to do a detour down through the middle this would be good for young Phil Young and Doorstop who need the added excersize this would incur for them as South Aussies...

Acourse another problem here is that those apple pickers in Tassie would probably become rather rabid about not having anything to do and chew each others gronicles off in their attempts to get over and give everyone a hand!

SOooo there we have it!!... you and Tony get a move on and I'll meet whoever gets to the border! :D

Take it easy

[ 12-03-2002, 03:56 AM: Message edited by: Wild Dingo ]

12-04-2002, 06:18 AM
And Sydney's burning...... Over 30 fires started within half an hour this afternoon - co-incidently at the same time that schoolkids got let out for the day, 3.30pm. A 37 degrees Centrigrade day with winds gusting to 38 knots. Five firefighters and two residents badly burnt just down the road from me. Lots of smoke but at present the fires are headed away from us, but towards where my boat is moored. I'm told the river there looked black today from all the smoke in the air.

The bush (forest) behind my house is 75% dead from the drought - eucalypts up to 80' high all sitting there with dead leaves on them - and they won't recover.

Not bad for 4 days into summer eh?

Total contrast to the rainforests of Vanuatu (known as the New Hebrides prior to independence in 1980), where we took the family for a soccer tournament a week ago.


12-04-2002, 06:41 AM
Im thinking about you Igatenby, funny about the timing isn't it. Seems like a bit of pressure needs to be applied, someone knows, some kid will crack. Trouble is there will be a lynch lobby by then so maybe the authorities wont want to know. Next door but two to us at the beach house is 20 acres of weedy, overgrown scrub with locked gates on the through road. Fieries don't have the authority so the Council are trying to get the owner to co-operate. The slope is such that if ever it gets going nothing will stop it, it's part of living where we do. Glad you are OK so far, hope the boat is well out on the water, it is going to be a long and painful summer.

Phil Young
12-04-2002, 09:20 PM
Hey Dingo ya drongo, there's already a bloody great trench right round oz, they used to use it for boats and cargo and all sorts, then trucks came along and bitumen roads, and maritime unions. Nuther story. Onya mate.

Wild Dingo
12-04-2002, 10:10 PM
Aye Phil me ol sock no worries me members that bit of stuff from way back! :D

Ian duck mate... keep yer eyes peeled and stay safe... and get a hold of TonyH and look after yerselves over there was watchin those fires on the tv and wondered how you fellas were gettin on...

Which reminds me I gotta suell young Aaron onto the roof to clean out the gutters and mmmmm gonna have to dig out the chain saw and get rid of some of the debris of the Karris next to the house... mmmmm bloke could be a tad busy eh?

Hey Jeff aint you somewhere near that Mt Massadon area that burned during the Ash Wednesday fires a few years back?? gotta get the damn atlas out of the box!!... mmmmm wonder which box its in... sigh

Be safe fellas and Take it easy

On Vacation
12-04-2002, 10:15 PM
If you hada just helped me build that ditch across the Motherland, Dingo. You just thought I was a wee bit on the side of brain deprived when I told you that a nice creek across your fair land would serve a great purpose. Yea, you guys just wouldn't listen about two years ago.

Wild Wassa
12-04-2002, 10:40 PM
In this region we have water restrictions. The dams are half full. There are 4 dams in the catchment. There are also 4 dammed lakes. They are full. We can not afford to drink these, they are needed for sailing.

Originally posted by doorstop:
:eek: the only really bad snakes you've got over your way have the letters "M" and "P" after their names!Chris, there are lots of snakes in the Bush Capital. The snakes you mentioned are the Blind Snakes.


[ 12-04-2002, 10:48 PM: Message edited by: Wild Wassa ]