Gold Coast, resume drinking immediately

GOING off the drink for a whole month is a pretty impressive achievement.

Dry July challengers are well deserving of a drink or two now that August has arrived and no doubt there will be some impressive celebrations around the Coast tonight.

It seems the Gold Coast was with you in spirit for Dry July; only 8.8mm of rain fell on the city in the entire month.


Already one of our driest months of the year, the Gold Coast usually averages 51mm in July.

I’d just been enjoying a clear mild winter so I got a bit of a surprise at that news but sure enough, as I looked around, I noticed crunchy brown grass and chalk art smudged on my driveway from weeks ago.

As a smoky haze obscured the city yesterday, the implications of this weighed down on me.

Not long ago, Gold Coasters were hyper aware of our rainfall shortages. Every weather report updated us on the critically low dam levels and we responded in force by rationing our water use and learning fast about water conservation.

Fast-forward to 2014 and the Hinze Dam rarely rates a mention in the news. It is currently sitting at 86% capacity despite woeful rainfall in recent months.

Have we become complacent and out of touch with the weather?

Here’s a wake up call: the bushfire season starts today. It usually begins in September and was only recently moved forward from October. This year though, bush fire season has been bumped forward to August. Authorities are so concerned about the dry conditions ideal for fueling fires that it is already on high alert for one of the worst seasons in years.

I feel a bit blind sighted and I blame the media. Those dam level charts and daily reports used to keep me in the know but what is there for our current crisis?

We need something practical and visual to keep us alert and in preventative mode. The fire danger rating sign is just like the UV Index; useless. It never goes lower than ‘high’ and gives us nothing concrete to hold on to. A bit more information to satisfy an educated audience would be a start but that’s just my opinion.

Mother nature, get the memo; Dry July is over! Gold Coast, please resume drinking immediately. We are happy to set the example for you if you would like.