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Author Topic: Drought, Fires, and Smoke  (Read 1858 times)

tigertiger

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Re: Drought, Fires, and Smoke
« Reply #25 on: January 19, 2020, 04:36:51 pm »

***Topic tidied up***
Stay off the politics please
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Peter Fitness

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Re: Drought, Fires, and Smoke
« Reply #26 on: February 11, 2020, 09:57:30 pm »

Australia really is a land of contrasts. A severe drought and devastating bushfires have been followed by torrential rain and flooding in some areas. Lake Conjola, on the far south coast of NSW, saw many houses destroyed in the fires in January, now the town is under water. The lake has an entrance to the sea, but this was silted up with sand, so extremely heavy rain caused the lake to flood. Residents are angry with the local council for not clearing the entrance despite the forecast of imminent rain, and requests from residents. The entrance was eventually cleared by bulldozers, but not before water had entered many houses and caravans.


We here on the far north coast have had over 430 mm of rain so far this year, although towns right on the coast had much more. The transformation of the landscape has to be seen to be believed, it's gone from brown and almost grassless, to lush green in a few weeks, it looks wonderful - I've even had to mow the lawn three times :}  However, I'm not complaining, the creek is running again and our small paddock dam is full


While the rain was quite widespread, there are still some areas that need more, so the drought is not over yet. There are still a lot of fires burning, but most are being controlled, and there's little or no danger to life or property. More rain is forecast, so it could be wet for a while yet.


Peter.
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tigertiger

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Re: Drought, Fires, and Smoke
« Reply #27 on: February 12, 2020, 03:17:46 am »

Glad to hear things are turning around. People forget that flooding does not mean an end to a drought. Floods are on the surface and swollen rivers quickly run out to sea. It takes many months of rains for water sources to fully recover.
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roycv

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Re: Drought, Fires, and Smoke
« Reply #28 on: February 12, 2020, 04:38:11 am »

Hi all, fortunately here around Newcastle and Central Coast ( NSW ) the reservoirs are filling up very quickly, but as has been said flooding is a danger and I think I saw on a news item that water is flowing straight over ashes from trees rather than soaking into the ground.
I think we have some more wet weather coming on Friday as well.
regards Roy
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tigertiger

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Re: Drought, Fires, and Smoke
« Reply #29 on: February 12, 2020, 06:05:03 am »

Yes, ashes can set hard like cement. The surface run off can lead to flooding further downstream, as well as not replenishing ground water and aquifers. Full reservoirs mean that there will be enough water for domestic, industrial, and some farm use, including irrigation; but not for wild vegetation to recover fully. The bush will still be suffering drought and will soon dry out again, unless there is more steady rain over a prolonged period.
We had a 7 year drought where I live, and it was not until the third year of heavy rainy seasons, that things went back to normal with no water restrictions. We do have a fire season season here, but luckily we had no big fires during the drought years. Having said that, they do close the mountains to all but local herders for part of the year.
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redpmg

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Re: Drought, Fires, and Smoke
« Reply #30 on: February 12, 2020, 01:22:00 pm »

Weather is weird all over the world it seems - Johannesburg & Durban  have been having extensive flooding - Western Cape is having lots of rain in the supposedly dry season (winter rainfall area) much to the despair of the grape producers . It is alternatively hot and baking followed by cold and wet days unheard of in midsummer. Neighbouring Zimbabwe is in the middle of a drought .............Sister reports that her part of southern England is very wet and cold even by prior standards.

This part of the Cape is the home of "Fynbos" which literally explodes when catching fire - in the last few years there have been some very bad fires - unfortunately although Fynbos does usually recover the presence of many alien Port Jackson trees (originally from Oz) which burn much hotter can eliminate it for good. Worst thing about it is they have mostly been deliberately set - a good few years ago a young pyromaniac on holiday from the UK plead guilty to setting about 12 fires here in the Cape but was released to the UK Govt by the "Powers that Be" of the time.........

Fortunately there has been nothing like the devastation in Australia here - but in the mid 1700s a fire raged from nearby Caledon to Knysna taking over seven years to reach Knysna - leaving only the Knysna Forest standing today. Of course at the time there was no way to combat such a huge blaze and many hundreds of miles of land was devastated at the time..........Nowadays a lot of the area is taken over by grain producers (Wheat & Sorghum) which would not have been possible in a forested region........

Very sad to read of the trials & tribulations in Australia - wish we could do something positive to help.
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Peter Fitness

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Re: Drought, Fires, and Smoke
« Reply #31 on: February 13, 2020, 09:43:17 pm »

Yesterday was our 11th consecutive day of rain, with a total of 358 mm recorded in our gauge here at home. So far this year we have recorded 551 mm, more than half of last year's total of 848 mm. The dam which supplies the district's water is now overflowing, and all water restrictions have been lifted. We have had some local moderate flooding, and a few rural roads have water over them, but nothing serious. Tropical cyclone Uesi, which formed in the Coral Sea, has remained about 800 km off shore moving south, and did not bring any additional rain, but the swell it generated has caused some coastal erosion. The worst of the bushfires are now officially out, which is great news.


However, Australia is a very big country and there are still large areas requiring rain.


Peter.
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coch y bonddu

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Re: Drought, Fires, and Smoke
« Reply #32 on: February 13, 2020, 10:10:56 pm »

How is the situation regarding the fires in Australia now are they still raging or have they abeted now


Dave
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BrianB6

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Re: Drought, Fires, and Smoke
« Reply #33 on: February 14, 2020, 03:44:37 am »

All the NSW fires are under control but many are still burning.  2 Victorian fires are out of control and a small number are burning and controlled.   You have to remember that many of the fires are in difficult to access areas and it is easier to put a fire break around the fire and just let it burn which is what the aborigines did for 60,000 years.
The rain (and floods) have helped in Queensland and NSW but it has not reached Victoria yet.  <:(
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