Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Radio Netherlands in the water

On Sundays, our ABC New Radio rebroadcasts English language programmes from Deutsche Welle and Radio Netherlands. They are interesting shows. At least once on Radio Netherlands I have heard a programme called Earth Watch, or something similar. It is about our world environment and the problems we cause it.

This week it featured water and naturally Australia was on the list. An Australian author has written a book about our water issues and so she was an obvious person to be interviewed on the programme.

If I could remember half the tosh she spoke, I would be doing well. But here is a bit of it.

Apparently we are/were limited to 140 litres per person, per day. Evidently if we use more, we receive a please explain letter. A sympathetic view is taken if you have new triplets. It seems we are not allowed to water our gardens, nor wash out cars with anything else but a bucket of water.

Now granted the woman was in Sydney, which she later mentioned, and perhaps the above are what Sydney's water restrictions were, but I don't think so, and she ought not speak for Australia with a voice from Sydney.

Occasionally a talkback caller will call in to ABC Melbourne and make a statement that it is taken on face value by the broadcaster who is in the chair at the time. I recall one about public transport tickets that I knew was very wrong. Even the esteemed broadcaster Jon Faine mentioned some nonsense about his public transport ticket problem being that he was too quick to get to the railway station from the tram, and it caused a ticket problem.

I like to hear corrections of such matters, or at least a caution issued by the broadcaster. Radio Netherlands really need to verify supposed facts before they go to air or at least be a bit more cautious about what goes out in their name. If only a little of the money that is going into the royal wedding could be snipped out for some cheap but quality radio, the world would be a better place.


  1. '...she ought not speak for Australia with a voice from Sydney...'

    OK, as a certain Ms Hanson once asked, please explain. Regardless of whether it is Sydney or any other Australian town/city 'voice' is it your thesis that no-one can speak 'for Australia'?

  2. Victor, if she was quoting Sydney water restrictions, she should have made it clear. As you know, water restrictions are not Australia wide, but she spoke as if they were. Was one of Sydney's water restrictions, or suggested usage, 140 litres a day?

  3. It sounds more like some futuristic dystopia novel to me - at what point is the 140 l measured? What if you use lots one day and a little the next?? What kind of 'excuse' (other than triplets) would be OK for overuse, and who would determine this???

    Are you sure she wasn't talking about a work of fiction??

  4. Average over your billing cycle Red. Maybe looking after an incontinent parent could allow you some extra water.

  5. I can't recall the specifics of the water restrictions we had. As I don't wash my car at home and I don't have a garden or a pool I lived my life as though the restrictions didn't exist except that I tried to maintain as modest a level of household usage as personal hygiene would permit.

  6. Interestingly Victor, I recall that Sydney? stopped people washing cars in the street with a hose well before the restrictions.