Water Restrictions

You know how people often describe a place as “sunny” when they want it to sound good as in “Here we are in sunny downtown Detroit”?  Sunny starts to look less positive when you’re in your fourth consecutive year of below average rainfall (AKA drought).  All over Australia, water restrictions are in place because of widespread drought conditions.  In Melbourne, we have just had “Stage 2” restrictions imposed, the biggest impact of which is you aren’t allowed to water laws AT ALL.

Lucky they didn’t try to introduce this during football season.  I’m sure there are some exceptions for professional venues but in general, no watering of public places which means all the parks are going to dry up.  I know many country areas which have way worse water worries (how’s that for some impromptu alliteration?) than Melbourne have been unable to water sporting fields for years.  This leads to surfaces quickly turning to dirt and rock which is an… interesting surface to get tackled onto if you’re playing one of the football codes.  At least the ground will get some much needed moisture when the players all start bleeding profusely.  Actually, sport in many areas has had to be cancelled for this very reason – the players were risking serious injury because of the playing surface.

I’m not going to turn this into a global warming rant, there are plenty of people more qualified than me (and many who are considerably less qualified) willing to expound at great length on the future we are facing.  The current Australian government is doing George Bush proud with a complete head in the sand approach, refusing to sign the Kyoto protocol and regularly seeking to cast doubt on the science behind global warming theories.

I got a bit of a laugh this morning when a quite conservative morning TV show ripped on a government minister for doubting the reality of climate change.  They cited some figures from Al Gore’s “An Inconvenient Truth” to quite aggressively shoot the minister down.  Life’s getting funny when conservative talking heads are starting to sound like rabid tree-hugging hippies.

So now we’re on Stage Two restrictions and all those little old European ladies will have to stop watering their concrete driveways.  The smart betting is on restrictions being stepped up to Stage Three before Christmas unless there is considerable and consistent rainfall before them.  At that point you have to start drinking your own urine.  Still, at least it isn’t as bad as Stage Four.

That’s when you have to start drinking other people’s urine.



Filed under General Angriness

14 responses to “Water Restrictions

  1. let’s stop flushing our toilets like the MP in London 😉

  2. Seriously, there are places in Australia where the only water is brought in by truck. Flushing the toilet has become a luxury. We will end up going back to the old “hole in the ground” toilets I grew up with in the bush.

  3. I really feel for you with the drought. We’ve finally had some rain for the first time in 2 years, but are still considered in it. For the first time all year my grass is finally green and we’re coming on to winter. That is sad. My yard hasn’t been watered in that entire 2 years.

    I would hate to think of going back to the hole in the ground. We had those when I was a kid. BLECH

  4. Yep, it’s fun living in a country that’s naturally 90% desert and looks like heading towards 100% desert.

  5. Well, I might complain about the rain and the cold here a lot, but I’m quite happy I’m not living in what is or will soon be a desert. Looks like it’ll be a bit longer before I return…

  6. Salamaat,
    whoa, that’s really scary…lol @ conservatives sounding like ‘rabid tree hugging hippies’…you are too funny Mr. Angry even at the looming threat of drinking urine and whatnot 🙂

  7. Michelle: it’s actually raining today but there are definitely some bad long term trends developing here

    Maliha: you gotta laugh or you’ll cry

  8. “Yep, it’s fun living in a country that’s naturally 90% desert and looks like heading towards 100% desert.”

    Was Austrailia always a good portion desert, or did that happen by some othe means?

    You know, global warming is an issue regardless if it is due to greenhouse gasses our not, but the scary thing about it is the world’s major countries are ignoring much bigger issues. (And did you hear about the chemical that mostly replaces cholorflorocarbons? I read this within the past week, but I haven’t had time to search for an online link.)

    By the way, I just posted about the much bigger issues here, for anyone who cares to read (warning, it’s long):

    If you depend on florescent bulbs to change the world, prepare for huge disappointment (3-part series)

  9. Australia is naturally arid but even the big cities are in danger now. Thanks for the link!

  10. I’m married to an environmental engineer, so when I read this post to him his response was that although global warming is an issue, we can’t attribute everything to it. Climate change is cyclical, these things happen it’s just more noticable now that we can track the weather and information is exchanged more globally.

    Just out of curiosity, do you happen to know anything about Australia’s wastewater recycling programs?

  11. Absolutely right that not everything is about global warming. Australia needs to address water conservation first (critical) and global warming second (long term issue). I gett annoyed with people who say we should ignore global warming though (not that you were saying that).

    Australians seem to have a psychological problem with recycling waste water for drinking although I suspect it soon won’t be optional. A regional area in queensland recently voted against a pilot program to test recycling sewage. A lot of lies were spread by the “anti” camp that played on people’s fears of “drinking poo”.

  12. That’s too bad. We live in California where there are several recycled water plants (that’s how we ended up here, my husband designs them). Almost all recycled water is used for watering things like golf courses, lawns, corporate grounds etc. Even though it technically could be drunk, and is probably better than water in some countries, it’s not used for drinking. Interesting that a country with so little water to start with would not consider using it for things like flushing toilets 🙂

  13. MEEEE

    Here, in brisbane we are facing now level 4 water restiction and in a couple of months we will have level 5, so its very tough to have showers and not being able to spend alot of time in there.

  14. twentysomegirl: we’re moving in that direction. Our plumbing systems don’t allow for different water to be used for drinking and flushing without expensive modification (which has actually been done where I work)

    MEEEE: Yep, it’s getting tough. Might be time to move to NZ where they have too much water.

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