Just lately after our 8 days of the Great 2010 East Coast Monsoon – I am getting a bit weary of TV news interviews of people from flooded towns making variants of this standard “knee jerk” claim; “..ten years of worst ever drought and now we get flooded out..”.
A woman from Dubbo has been all over TV news on the weekend with this sort of statement. It puzzles me that TV news journalists or editors can not be bothered to make basic checks on the net that take seconds using Google.
Now going back to November 2008 – there were floods at Tamworth and I posted on strange comments from the NSW Premier – then Nathan Rees.
That post included drought maps for NSW and you can see there was no drought for the northern half of NSW from 1st Nov 2005 – to 30 Oct 2008.
Making drought maps now at this BoM site and you can see there is no drought over the vast areas of most of Australia for 36 months, 1st Dec 2007 to 30 Nov 2010.
So I think people claiming “ten years of drought” or a “decade of drought”, should be careful to check facts about exactly what it is they are claiming.
I notice this Sydney Morning Herald article from yesterday with another classic media lie.
“But the soaking has done little for Sydney’s dams, with only one millimetre falling over Warragamba in the seven days to yesterday morning.”
I take their yesterday morning to mean the 4th. Taking a quick look at daily rain data for 28th November – 4th December for stations in the huge Warragamba catchment, I find, Lithgow recorded 129.2, Bowral 112 and Taralga 85.
All useful rain that falls free from the sky and will run down creeks to Warragamba Dam. Simply stunning misinformation from a huge media company.
They could have also checked the Sydney Catchment Authority website to find this, 100mm rain for the week ended 2nd Dec.
Added on 7th – just saw this incorrect reference to “..a decade of drought..” in another Sydney Morning Herald article. “Farmers say goodbye drought, hello flood”. They talk about the Warren Shire which is in the northern half of NSW where long periods of the last decade have been drought free.