Letters to the editor - Jan 23

Letters to the editor - Jan 23

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Bushfires and fireworks were on the minds of Stock Journal readers this week.

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FREQUENT FIRES TAKE TOLL

The situation communities find themselves in with the present fire situation is completely unacceptable.

For a start, I have not seen credible evidence to support climate change that will stand up to honest examination.

One volcanic eruption can put out more carbon dioxide than humanity has been responsible for since we have been on earth.

We now have the Country Fire Authority chief officer being quoted on the ABC website saying there is a "fair amount of emotion" on the failure to reduce fuel.

He was further quoted as saying "we had fire down the landscape here that has had burns go right through it (during cooler months) and it hasn't slowed it at all".

I think this is disgusting and misleading. The CFA learning manual I have states in just one line: "The more fuel there is - the greater the fire intensity."

When I did the CFA level two training, I was given a McCarthur Meter to calculate fire intensity and spread. This showed that if the fuel load was doubled the fire intensity increased four times, and if doubled again the intensity would be 16 times.

The approach taken from the green movement has left the Wellington Plains in the Gippsland, Vic, high country looking worse than a desert landscape after three hot fires in just 21 years.

There are only four trees left living on the plains, the sphagnum bogs and bushes, along with the seed-stock, are all gone.

This is after 12 months from the previous hot fire. There is just the odd blade of grass in places. Apart from that, it is just a bare desert landscape, for kilometres.

This is like nothing I have seen in all the years I worked in the desert, apart from the dry beds of salt lakes.

It will not be long, if the present management continues, before the whole of the high country is similar, and with extinctions.

The worst culprits I blame for these fires are the politicians. Too many politicians appear to be following the least line of resistance.

Some rivers use this approach and usually end up crooked, or deviating from the main stream.

Lindsay Barraclough,

Licola, Vic.

KEEP FIREWORK DISPLAYS

Fireworks were originally invented in China between 960 and 1279.

One of the original cultural practices for fireworks at the time was to scare away evil spirits.

Today cultural events and festivities, such as the New Year and days of significance throughout the world, are times when fireworks are guaranteed sights.

Worldwide, audiences of billions of people are spellbound in awe and amazement throughout these fireworks displays and a high level of uplifting euphoria is exhibited after their conclusion.

Through the years some have advocated that the money, often in the millions for large displays, should be allocated to more pressing matters and causes.

Despite this limited objection, fireworks displays have continued to be a major part of celebrations across the world.

With the recent devastating bushfires in Australia, there has been a concerted effort, by some, to bring this practice to an end by linking the nature of fireworks to these disasters.

Such a move smacks of opportunism, ignores the safety precautions required for these displays, the joy they provide to millions and the resilience of the bushfire victims.

One proposed alternative, a computer generated and choreographed light show, would continue the demise of human endeavour, ingenuity and practical skills, as our society manically pursues everything digital.

Will matches, lighters and birthday candles be the next victims?

Ian Macgowan,

Ceduna.

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