17 January 2011

The Australian... drought ?!

For the title of this post, I wanted to insert an interrobang or quesclamation mark (left), but didn't know how to do that.  So I'll use the old-fashioned double mark.

Everyone must be aware of the catastrophic flooding that has hit Queensland, Australia this past week.  I was therefore a bit surprised to encounter at Aljazeera a news report about Australia's problems with drought.  It involves the Murray-Darling river basin, which encompasses about half of the country's agricultural land.

As with so many water crises around the world, it appears to be resulting from a combination of natural forces and questionable water management policies.  I've heard similar arguments raised about the Colorado, the Nile, the Jordan, and the Danube.

I've embedded part one of a two-part news report.  Part two is here.


  1. The Wikipedia article you referenced included the symbol in all kinds of different fonts to be able to copy it! :)


  2. Thanks, DubyaD. I just tried it, and it didn't seem to come out very well. ‽

  3. I live in Sydney, and for the last... maybe 10 or 15 years (?) we have had fairly strict water restrictions due to drought, and government water officers patrolling the suburbs looking for people illegally using water. At one point a couple of years ago, the percantage of the state (new south wales) afflicted by drought got up to 85%. On every water bill from the city, your useage is compared to the state average, the average in your local area, and what the government thinks you SHOULD be using given the listed occupants. Government funded TV ads suggest ways of saving water, including sharing showers and using a shower timer, making a dirty car a badge of pride, urinating outside whenever possible, manually washing dishes... Our household did very well, by the end we were using less than a quarter of the 'recommended' water useage quota provided by the government. It was a chronic, critical, crippling problem, and probably will be again at some point after the la niña rains abate.

  4. Well,perhaps the Thai rainmakers are a bit overly enthusiastic?

    August 8, 2010


    A rain-making method developed by Thai king Bhumipol Adulyadej is set to aid Queensland in battles with drought after an agreement between the state government and the Thai royal household.

    Also, this is interesting reading on the Vortex Rainmaking Guns in Graham Andrews Park just off the road to Cunnamulla.


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