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Thursday, 24 January 2008

I love a sunburnt country...
Even if we're about to get flooded

Flood 1991

Are we about to get flooded
after we have only just moved here?

I love a sunburnt country,
A land of sweeping plains,
Of ragged mountain ranges,
Of drought and flooding rains,
I love her far horizons,
I love her jewel sea,
Her beauty and her terror -
The wide brown land for me.

Part of an Australian poem called My Country
written by Dorothea Mackellar early last century

The major river that runs past the city we live in now, has a long and well documented history of flooding with flood records dating back to 1859. The highest recorded flood occurred in January 1918 and reached 10.11 metres on the gauge. The most recent major flood occurred in January 1991. The flood was the third highest on record and rose to a height of 9.30 metres on the gauge.

The thing that has us nervous is from our research the expected peak of the flood of 8.5 metres will not place us in any bad situation, especially since the house is on high stilts, but if it raises just another .5 to .8 metre the whole of the downstairs under house storage area will be flooded. As we have only just finished moving, theres still a lot of possesions which are stored under the first floor of the house.
The hard thing is if we were to get just half a cm of flood thru, a lot of our possessions would be destroyed. Do we trust the weather man who earlier said the flood peak early next week would be about 9 meters, has now revised it to 8.5metres. At 8.5 metres we are safe by I estimate 30 -5 0 cms.
To move all the stuff stored underneath will take a lot of work.

Last night we saw pictures of the flood of 19-88 and our house and the block of houses around us sat like a desert island, high and dry.

Tonight I made the mistake of looking at the 1991 flood, it wasn't a pretty sight we could see our house was flooded. The photo above shows the 19-91 flood including our house flooded, which for privacy reasons I haven't indicated.

What would you do? Trust the projected flood heights knowing if they are basically right we will be safe? Or move it all upstairs which requires a herculean effort.

Any one own a dinghy?

Dorothea Mackellar:
My Country


Canada pulls out of Durban II farce

From AP

OTTAWA (AP) — Canada has withdrawn its support for a U.N. anti-racism conference scheduled to take place in South Africa next year after deeming it to be anti-Israel, a government official said Wednesday.

The so-called Durban II conference "has gone completely off the rails" and Canada wants no part of it, said Jason Kenney, Canada's secretary of state for multiculturalism and Canadian identity.

"We'll attend any conference that is opposed to racism and intolerance, not those that actually promote racism and intolerance," he said.

Kenney said that during the 2001 World Conference Against Racism in Durban, Arab and Muslim countries criticized Israel, prompting Israel and the United States to walk out in protest. But he added that Canada remained to speak up for Israel.

The U.N. declined to comment directly on Canada pulling out of the conference, but U.N. spokeswoman Marie Okabe said "racism is too important an issue for member states not to work out their differences."

Kenney said his government was left with no choice but to abandon the process, expressing displeasure with Libya elected to chair the gathering, Cuba appointed vice-chair, and Iran named to the organizing committee.

"This (Iran) is a country whose government has publicly expressed its desire to eliminate the only Jewish country in the world," he said.

Mr Bagel: Finally some one has turned the light on in Canada. The Canadian government should be commended for taking an active stance against such a blatantly anti Israel conference.

Further Reading:
The Canadian Press:
Canada abandons UN anti-racism conference; Kenney calls it 'circus'
Canada to shun Durban conference
Canada pulls support for UN anti-racism conference