BOM findings show continuing rainfall deficiencies

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The Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) have issued their latest weekly rainfall update, and shed light on precipitation deficits across the nation over 10-, 20- and 41-month periods. While the long-term signs are positive for some areas, including much of Western Australia and the Northern Territory, eastern parts of the country in particular continue to cope with considerably less rainfall than normal.

At the 10-month level, while there are pockets of NSW, Victoria and Queensland where more rain has been falling, the overall picture is one of continuing dry conditions. Stretching out the timeline, however, very few regions have experienced significant falls, with some areas as low as 30 per cent of the average.

Hardest hit in the period since May 2015, the north-western coast of WA from Karratha to the Damper Peninsula has been incredibly dry.

Victorian farmers seeking a reprieve

With parts of the state receiving less than 70 per cent of their average rainfall in recent months, some Victorian agriculturalists are understandably seeking the support of authorities to ease the crisis. According to the ABC, West Wimmera Shire Mayor Annette Jones proposed last week that the local council could help those struggling the most with hardship grants to cover their ongoing water costs.

Despite the incoming introduction of a new user-pays system to cover the cost of water infrastructure upgrades making things more difficult for some, Mayor Jones' suggestion was voted down by her fellow councillors. However, the council has committed to exploring other avenues for helping those most in need.

"It's all very well getting information but agreeing to provide financial support was a step too far and we'll wait and see the information that comes back first," she said.

Installing a water storage solution is one way to reduce dependency on public supplies, so consider investment in polyethylene water tanks today.

By Gerald Beckton

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