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Mt. Stromlo Observatory Burns.

Discussion in 'Issues Around the World' started by ditch, Jan 19, 2003.

  1. ditch

    ditch Downunder Member

    Some of you will be aware of The Mount Stromlo Observatory in Canberra, Australia's capital. It has been largley ruined by bush fires over the past few days with several of its telescopes and library containing valuable achives lost.
    The fires have also destroyed over 400 homes and 4 people have died. I don't know how much you get to hear over there but there's some info here.

    A few pics here.

    The difficulties you have in the northern hemisphere are extreme I know. The cold you live through is something we cannot comprehend unless we've experienced it when overseas. I have read about the difficulties some of you are having keeping warm in another thread and the high cost of fuel. Sounds like there's a market here. Some of your cold for some of our heat. :)
     
  2. Biker

    Biker Administrator Staff Member

    Mate, you can have all the cold you want. It's currently -9c here with a wind chill of -19c. Low tonight is supposed to get to -11 and later this week they're talking a low of -19.. To what address can we ship this mess?
     
  3. ditch

    ditch Downunder Member

    Perhaps just a bit of that anywhere near Sydney or Canberra thanks Biker.:thumbsup:
     
  4. mikepd

    mikepd Veteran Member

    So what is being done at higher government levels as far as aid is concerned? I'm clueless as to NSW and ACT terminology (dumb American and all that). They showed some of the firestorm on tv and it was devastating to watch. I can't even begin to imagine what it must be like to live there. The sight of the little boy and girl in the pictures really gets to you. Kids bounce back so fast. What was going through the mind of the man as he stood outside his ruined house, I can only wonder.

    Can the military bring any firefighting and other aid in? They are good for more than just knocking things down. The US version is also good at building and I'm sure the Aussie counterpart is too. Just get the government to say the word.
     
  5. martissimo

    martissimo Veteran Member

    Off the top of my head i can't think of one region on this planet that is not prone to being a victim of Mother Nature's whimsical outbursts in one way or another....

    whether it be snow, fire, earthquakes, torandoes, hurricanes, etc... while always sad, it's fairly certain that there is nothing you can do to escape her wrath. It may be one of the few things that you can count on in life with almost as much certainty as an eventual death ;)
     
  6. ditch

    ditch Downunder Member

    Thats certainly true Martissimo. I recall a week or two ago seeing the snow storms in the US causing havioc. Last night on the news it was Brazil that was copping torrential rain and mud slides.
    This summer here is the worst on record though. The drought is the worst recorded and the imapct on exports because of crop losses is substantial.
     
  7. ditch

    ditch Downunder Member

    NSW- The state of New South Wales of which Sydney is the capital.
    ACT - Aust Capital Territory where Canberra is located.

    Firefighting teams come in from interstate and a couple also from New Zealand on this occasion. The army does assist if required. Lots of after the event ciriticisms of poor planning of the fight against the fires. Its something we get most years so have plenty of practice at but this is an extreme year, the worst on record.
    I imagine you have similar expert views on how global warming is to blame when you get extreme weather conditions as we do. They could well be right.
     
  8. mikepd

    mikepd Veteran Member

    Thanks for the explanation of terms. Second guessing is always going to happen. Where I am, hurricanes are the potential major disaster.

    Due to the way they have laid the traffic flow, in the event of a category 4 hurricane 250,000 people would have just 4 hours to evacuate over two lanes by the time a mandatory evacuation order was issued for my county which is an hour drive north of Tampa Bay.

    Here is an article describing what would happen to Tampa, Fl. and why it is at risk:

    http://www.weather.com/newscenter/specialreports/hurricanes/vulnerablecities/tampa.html

    I'm in Pasco county, then south is Pinellas, then a bit further southeast is Hillsborough where Tampa is located.

    The storm surge would be tremendous. Yet they build so close to the water it's absurd. Have to get that nice view, you know. When the 'big one' hits the disaster is going to be as bad as what you are seeing where you are now. Politicians are amazing for allowing this sort of thing to happen. You would think that part of their job description is to lead.
     
  9. ditch

    ditch Downunder Member

    "The storm surge would be tremendous. Yet they build so close to the water it's absurd. Have to get that nice view, you know. When the 'big one' hits the disaster is going to be as bad as what you are seeing where you are now. Politicians are amazing for allowing this sort of thing to happen. You would think that part of their job description is to lead."


    Similar thing here. People choose to live in woodland areas with no attempt to clear the undergrowth every year or so. Its pleasant sitting on the porch with the leaves close by but in times like these its a disaster. I don't think allowing people to live in these sorts of conditions is responsible on the part of the politicians. When ther inevitable happens the pressure that is put on emergency services is extreme. If some people don't know how to behave wisely they need to be shown. If that means not being allowed to have trees growing over your balcony or whatever then so be it. Especially in a country that is prone to bushfires as we are.

    I see on the news reports the weather related problems you have and you experience things unfamiliar to us, such as coastal storm surges. Also those Twisters are the most awesome looking things.
     
  10. mikepd

    mikepd Veteran Member

    Mother Nature is most awesome and man thinks with technical advances we can overcome it? Whose smoking what? When Mt. St. Helens erupted in 1980 it did so with an estimated force equivalent to the blast effect of 500 Hiroshima type bombs.

    This is the type of force our puny talents are going to stop? Why do we continue to build in dangerous situations when the probabilities are 'low'? Knowing full well 'low' is a relative term and sooner or later a bill is going to be presented marked 'payable upon receipt'. Pure arrogance and folly.
     

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