ABC Radio National Earshot: Hot summer land: anticipation, fires, rivers

ABC Radio National

‘Hot summer land [three parts], Earshot, 18-20 April 2016 updated

Part one: anticipation; part two: fires; part three: rivers.

Listeners’ stories and guest commentary (host Kirsti Melville) on how the Australian landscape changed during the three months of an El Nino summer. Audio, no transcript but some short written pieces. Links here to other ABC stories on environmental issues. Later there is this and this on the hottest Autumn on record. And even more from Inside Story in June.

After the sun has sunk low behind the peppermint, we venture out to the back patio. Fine white smoke seeps below the clouds and across the fences. From our house in the low of the land I cannot see the towering pyrocumulus cloud that hangs over Waroona to the south. I know from the stream of information delivered to my phone that a fire is burning with such intensity that it has created its own weather system – a fire storm with gusty and unpredictable winds. People that were evacuated south have had to turn west. The fire is hot and travelling fast over a broad front; the night ahead is uncertain. A humid change would help slow its spread. (Viki Cramer)

Not just in summer, very urban but still fascinating are these pictures of just part of our wide brown land, taken from a blimp over Sydney. More on water management, suggesting we underestimate the risks of drought.

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