Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Noah knew

Over the 12 years of the drought, Melbourne has missed out on 1.8m of rain, or three years of average rainfall, Dr Stern said. "It is going to take many years of good rainfall to remove these deficiencies," he said.

A snip from the Herald Sun. We are at around 27% of our water storage capacity. I don't like the statement above as it is not how I understand our water supply or weather works. Since when have we ever had many years of good rainfall?

I refer you to the lines from Dorothy Mackellar's poem

I love a sunburnt country,
A land of sweeping plains,
Of ragged mountain ranges,
Of drought and flooding rains,

That's right, droughts and flooding rains. If our drought ends, it won't be after many years of good rainfall. It will be floods.


  1. Very good point you have there.

    Do you know the history of floods in Melbourne? Have there been big ones? Do you know which years?

  2. Loverboy1:56 pm

    I think Miss Mackellar is talking about the inland. There have been droughts in coastal cities but none this bad in my memory. Elizabeth Street is an old watercourse, I've seen photos of it in flood.
    Andrew I heard what I consider a neglected classic on the radio the other day: 'Don't Fall in Love' by 'The Ferrets'. It's on youtube, have a look, it seems a bit camp (if I know what that is).

  3. Floods is right Andrew. Last time, in the 1980's we got flooded into our house out in the sticks and we had to stay right there until it receeded..which meant no school..and watching lots of VHS... Gremlins, The Goonies, Revenge Of The Nerds, Police Academy, Porkys...and more.. ahh the good old 80's :)
    The Aboriginal peoples at Halls Gap told us that the floods will come sometime soon. Theybase it on alot of factors, one of them being that the Kangaroos are now mating again..lots of Joeys about.. they only do this when they know there will be enough food to sustain their young when old enough. I think I trust that judgement.

  4. Dina, I don't especially know. Often the flooding is localised but sometimes widespread. As Cazzie said, early eighties. Mid seventies too. Where we need the rain is in the mountains and water catchments.

    In part perhaps LB, but much of it applies to the whole country. I know that track well and I like it. Glam punk?

    Cazzie, it will be interesting to see what rain happens then. What awful movies!

  5. Floods is right, Elizabeth St could host the next regatta.

  6. You would have seen the photos Jayne. It was like a river.

  7. Sheesh.

    Just because dams are at 25% of capacity doesn't mean that we aren't getting the inflows.

    Look. If you add a million and a bit folks to a city, water demand is going to rise. If you don't increase the supply side, you start to run into problems.

    The water inflows are there. It is just that the government has been too busy spending money on making it look good instead of fixing the supply problems.

    Anyone caught a tram or looked at the network lately? Same deal. Lots of money for spin (think transport plan!), but nothing for network improvement.

  8. I think now whenever I hear the word flood I'm going to think of The Goonies and Gremlins.

  9. Loverboy11:53 pm

    Passing through Gundagai years ago I was very surprised to find a memorial to twenty people or so drowned in a flood there, it happened during the 19th century I think. There's a pub near the Mitchell River in Bairnsdale that's been covered up to its roof a few times, and another across the Maribyrnong here (can't think of the suburb) also prone to getting washed out.

  10. Msilsby, well, we haven't really been getting the rainfall in the catchments, so there can't be normal inflow, but your point is valid. Add all these extra people without a water supply for them,or us. Ditto trams and trains.

    Dina, I guess flooding is never a problem where you are, unless you overflow the bath.

    LB, I know that pub well on the banks of the river. Gundagai is in a narrowish valley is it? I can't recall. But that would be a recipe for severe flood damage.

  11. Loverboy2:38 pm

    I don't know if Gundagai is in a valley, but I later remembered that The Anglers Tavern is the name of the pub on the Maribyrnong River and the suburb is actually called Maribyrnong. Bar patrons have been up to their knees in water but anyway are the type to wear shorts all year.

  12. That is it, Anglers, close to the water, too close at times.


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