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Water consumption off the hook as inflows hit record lows

johnboy 24 March 2009 126

The thing the surprises me most about Canberra’s water use is that it’s taken so very long for the public to become totally fatigued by the perpetual emergency.

It has to be a little disappointing to our Power and Water overlords to see their decree of 1 March, that we collectively lower water use to 112 megalitres per day, has been met with near complete indifference. Yesterday water use surged to 171.9 megalitres.

To make matters worse the ABC informs us that inflows are at record lows.

Dam levels, however, are still at 46% (well up from the scary lows of mid 2007) so no plans to announce new water restrictions.


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126 Responses to Water consumption off the hook as inflows hit record lows
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deye deye 2:19 pm 25 Apr 09

I keep forgetting to write a reply to this, however I’ve just found an easier way.

This letter http://www.staff.livjm.ac.uk/spsbpeis/PAS.htm from the Geologic Science Committee of the Polish Academy of Sciences sums up my thoughts much better than I can.

ant ant 10:08 am 31 Mar 09

Thsi incoming easterly weather might help the mountain totals a bit. From what I can see, it’s forcasted to nudge the towns on the western side of the range, so the Brindies should get something. Googong might do better though, this time.

However, there’s a “classic” westerly system heading in early next week, bringing cold weather (maybe even snow) and the brindies should cop the lion’s share of that.

chewy14 chewy14 9:00 am 31 Mar 09

welkin31 said :

It all look to me like deliberate managing of dam levels to keep them in a zone where water prices can be kept high and even higher.

Why would Actew want to sell less of its product when prices are fixed for five years by a regulator?

deye deye 12:18 am 31 Mar 09

Woody Mann-Caruso said :

Don’t forget, deye – I’m waiting.

You have nothing better to do on a Friday night and a weekend than to wait around to argue on the internet ? that’s a little depressing.

I’ll answer when I’m ready, been doing some reading.

Woody Mann-Caruso Woody Mann-Caruso 9:22 pm 27 Mar 09

That’s what science is all about, Ralph – asking questions. My position on global warming is clear – as I mentioned above, my cards are on the table. Now it’s deye’s turn.

If you’d like to queue jump, though, I’ll happily shoot you down first. Your ‘lagging indicator’ claim is another intellectual furphy used by non-scientists to further the ‘debate’ about climate. Go read this. I also note that lagging is entirely irrelevant to my question – what’s causing all the CO2? Perhaps you could enlighten me? (I put in that last bit so you could make a cynical remark rather than actually answering the question. I don’t want to make your life harder than it already is.)

Nice talking to you again Ralph.

Ralph Ralph 8:53 pm 27 Mar 09

So – what IS causing the rise in CO2 that hasn’t happened in over 720,000 years? Why won’t it the rise be couple with temperature like it has for the past 720,000 years?

I think you’ll find Woody, that the historical records show that CO2 is a lagging indicator. Temperatures rise first.

Instead of sitting around asking questions, why don’t you actually contribute something constructive? You haven’t so far.

Woody Mann-Caruso Woody Mann-Caruso 6:55 pm 27 Mar 09

Don’t forget, deye – I’m waiting.

welkin31 welkin31 1:06 pm 27 Mar 09

Rivers and their ecosystems have survived millions of years of changing climate, in and out of several ice ages, any notion that they are at risk from a few dams to supply our tiny water needs is ludicrous.
If you read what I said, it was “over target” environmental releases that need to be stopped.
If you look for ACTEW monthly Water and wastewater performance reports, you will find the graphics of environmental flows near the end, check it out, Cotter Dam Env Releases have been over target every month, I have some older docs showing they have been over target from Jan 2008 at least. Even Googong releases are mostly “over target”. This totals about a third of the annual average water ACTEW expect to gain from the Murrumbidgee / Googong pipeline. Which on the ACTEW website is stated to be 9 GL per yr (8 to 10 GL). See 4th question down at;
http://www.actew.com.au/WaterSecurity/majorprojects/murrumbidgee_googong_faq.aspx
So on the basis the pipeline is costing $100 Million to deliver 9 GL, then saving 3 GL per yr from better managed EF’s seems an obvious thing to do with a benefit of 10’s of $millions.

Fish too have survived millions of years of huge ebvionmental changes without our help.
In the case of fish in the Cotter, I doubt they are endangered and am sure they could live elsewhere in the ranges, if they had to. Whole lotta fuss about very little, but thats what happens with green issues.

The dam overflows last spring were made worse by over target Env releases from Bendora. You have to ask, why ? There is the Cotter to Googong transfer which is supposed to handle 150 ML per day. There should be minimal spillage over Cotter Dam if that transfer is working. Yet ACTEW’S graphs show periods of 100% level which = spillage, last spring.
http://www.actewagl.com.au/water/facts/damCapacity.aspx

It all look to me like deliberate managing of dam levels to keep them in a zone where water prices can be kept high and even higher.

chewy14 chewy14 10:55 am 27 Mar 09

welkin31 said :

If the Govt would stop wasting water on “over target” environmental releases, stop wasting water on “fish research”, that surely could be done elsewhere,
do more to stop spillage over Cotter Dam – which overflowed much of last spring; then we long suffering consumers could use more water and pay less per unit.
There are just 3 near zero cost ideas.

1. Stop environmental releases
Yeah Let’s let the rivers die.
2. Do Fish studies on endangered species somewhere else.
Yeah do those studies on fish that only exist in this catchment somewhere else.
3. Stop spilling over Cotter dam.
How? Maybe by building a new Cotter dam?

Great ideas Welkin.

Woody Mann-Caruso Woody Mann-Caruso 10:25 am 27 Mar 09

I’m not here to explain the baseline set over three quarters of a million years without man. It’s not controversial at all. You’re here to explain the unprecedented increase above that baseline over the last hundred and fifty years. What changed? How do you know? How does that change increase CO2 but also keep the temperature of the planet stable?

Here’s a hint – the answer isn’t volcanoes or the sun.

welkin31 welkin31 10:00 am 27 Mar 09

On an annual basis consumption has been reducing for a decade now, see this ACTEW graphic.
http://www.actewagl.com.au/water/facts/annualConsumption.aspx
To put recent daily consumption in perspective we need to see the annual cycle of say monthly consumption. The only useful figures I can see quickly are here,
http://www.actewagl.com.au/water/facts/statistics.aspx
the figures they quote for Normal summer (winter) daily consumption could be out of date because the winter figure of 118 ML per day is almost exactly our daily average consumption for the fin year 2007/2008.
If the Govt would stop wasting water on “over target” environmental releases, stop wasting water on “fish research”, that surely could be done elsewhere,
do more to stop spillage over Cotter Dam – which overflowed much of last spring; then we long suffering consumers could use more water and pay less per unit.
There are just 3 near zero cost ideas.

deye deye 9:26 am 27 Mar 09

You’re right, I missed that part of the question as I was half asleep. I’m about to run off to work so will have to answer later, but I also have a question for you. Prior to humans being around what do you think changed the CO2 level as during the period the ice core covered it did fluctuate.

Woody Mann-Caruso Woody Mann-Caruso 9:11 am 27 Mar 09

It’s part of the ice core record, why would I dispute that ? It doesn’t mean that the current CO2 level is caused by humans, nor does it mean that it isn’t.

I asked you specifically what’s causing it. I say humans. You say it maybe it is, maybe it isn’t. Science has put its cards on the table, so now you need to put up – tell us why the science is wrong, show the errors in its data, and offer evidence for an alternative cause – or shut up.

What you’re saying is exactly the same as me saying “apples fall toward the ground, why would I dispute that? It doesn’t mean the falling is caused by gravity, nor does it mean that it isn’t.” It’s called ‘conjuring away the question’, and its a sign of intellectual weakness.

So – what IS causing the rise in CO2 that hasn’t happened in over 720,000 years? Why won’t it the rise be couple with temperature like it has for the past 720,000 years? Put up or f.ck off.

deye deye 1:41 am 27 Mar 09

Thumper said deye,
12000BP is generally thought to be the end of the severest of the last ice age. Around this time we also see the flooding of the land bridge from mainland Australia to tasmania and place such as Batesman bay becoming coastal.

We started coming out of the glacial period about 15,000 years ago, it was warming nicely to almost current levels when it suddenly dropped back into the Younger Dryas which lasted around 1,300 years and ended with the rapid warming mentioned earlier.

Woody Mann-Caruso said Let’s try this the other way, shall we? How about all you climate experts explain to me:
– why CO2 levels are drastically higher than they’ve ever been for the past 720,000 years – that’s the past 8 ice ages; and
– what’s so magical about modern CO2 that causes it not to act like a greenhouse gas like regular CO2.
References to reputable, peer-reviewed journals, please.

Peer reviewed journals tend to cost a bit to access, however in this case there is no need. According to the ice cores the highest reading during the last 700 thousand or so years was about 300 ppm while they are currently about 385 ppm. It’s part of the ice core record, why would I dispute that ? It doesn’t mean that the current CO2 level is caused by humans, nor does it mean that it isn’t.

However that isn’t 8 ice ages, it’s 8 glacial cycles in the current ice age. If they had been individual ice ages there would have been no ice sheets in between each of them to keep record of them. The current ice age has been going for about 2.3 million years and there has been about 80 glacial/interglacial cycles so far.

Go back further though and it does get higher. The standout ones are around 3,000 ppm about 150-200 million years ago and around 6,000 ppm about 400 and 600 million years ago.

I have no idea by what you mean in your last question.

Woody Mann-Caruso Woody Mann-Caruso 7:46 pm 26 Mar 09

Let’s try this the other way, shall we? How about all you climate experts explain to me:

– why CO2 levels are drastically higher than they’ve ever been for the past 720,000 years – that’s the past 8 ice ages; and

– what’s so magical about modern CO2 that causes it not to act like a greenhouse gas like regular CO2.

References to reputable, peer-reviewed journals, please.

Thumper Thumper 7:44 pm 26 Mar 09

deye,

12000BP is generally thought to be the end of the severest of the last ice age. Around this time we also see the flooding of the land bridge from mainland Australia to tasmania and place such as Batesman bay becoming coastal.

(Geez, RA is really slow tonight….)

deye deye 7:35 pm 26 Mar 09

deye said :

The datasets used aren’t accurate enough to tell, but I recall reading last year about some indications that some of the previous events have been as quick.

actually I’ve been doing a bit more reading and found an article that cited another article from a Greenland Ice Core drilling in ’92 which indicated that during the “Younger Dryas” Greenland warmed by about 7º in less than 50 years. This was about 12,000 years ago. Records further back become too fuzzy for that detail.

I haven’t been able to find an easily accessible version of the source article, just an overview and payment required.

el el 7:32 pm 26 Mar 09

Needs more BLOCK CAPS though Thumper 🙂

Thumper Thumper 7:28 pm 26 Mar 09

But enough of that. Rain would be nice 😉

Thumper Thumper 7:22 pm 26 Mar 09

Emyln, you are frothing at the mouth dear. Go and have a bex and a lie down.

Here is a link to the global cooling scare of the 70s.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Global_cooling

Climate has consistently changed. That is an undisputed fact. So much so that I couldn’t be bothered providing any morelinks. Maybe you could read some more books and find out yourself?

I will however suggest roman britain which was generally believed to be much warmer than now, also the middle ages warming period around 800-1300ad, plus the mini ice age of the 16th and 17th century. Or we could look at the Scara Brae population of 3000BP who, upon the area becoming extremely cold over a period of time, were left no choice but to move south to warmer climes.

And one wouldn’t want to forget that 12000BP one could walk to Tasmania (this was near the nd of the severest time of the last ice age). And that Batemans bay, as recent as 7000 years ago was actually 8-10 kms inland. In fact, if you go to Burril Lake you can find an Aboriginal rock shelter which used to be some 8-10kms from the coast.

I could keep going but I think this adequately points out that climate changes.

But what would a loonie irrational creationist bible bashing flat earther know hey?

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