Australia: Some Environmental Challenges

Find here water, pests, waste management issues and/or solutions
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Water

Except for the northern portion of the country which benefits from the monsoon effect, much of the rest of Australia is confronted with water scarcity. As a result, water bills and government incentives have encouraged the sprouting of water tanks for the purpose of collecting rain water. Desalination and water recycling plants are also being built to provide water to cities living under permanent water restrictions. On a large scale, it can be said that the thirsty mining industry competes with agriculture; but when droughts last several years, it is the farmers who are the most desperate to the point of committing suicide.
Local governments have subsidized and offered tax deductions for the installation of domestic water tanks to encourage citizens to use rain water to water their gardens and wash their cars, along with billing them the actual cost of potable water whenever their consumption exceeds their quota. But rebellion loomed when there were talks of a new fee targeting those who had benefitted from such subsidies with the rationale of compensating the government for the tax portion of the city water they did not consume any more.

Recycling and Waste Management

The government of NSW's efforts to promote eco-friendly efforts take the form of remarkably well done documentation explaining for instance the benefits of making your own mulch and how easy it is.
More on eco-mulch
To make sure that such documentation reaches all populations living in NSW regardless of language barriers, this brochure is also available in Vietnamese, Chinese, Korean, Spanish, Italian, Greek and Macedonian.
Another of these remarkable leaflets promotes how to make your own compost.
More on compost
Another one encourages the building of worm farms.
More on worm farms
Another brochure targets recycling efforts and best practices.
More on recycling at home
There is even one on how to replace cleaning products with lower environmental impact or naturally green recipes.
More on cleaning "green"
All of these brochures were issued by Local Councils of Sydney area and by Resource NSW.
We warmly encourage a visit to the following site for more tips on water, energy, etc. www.environment.nsw.gov.au

Waste management in the Outback is a far cry from the practices followed in big Australian cities and towns. In the Outback, a hole in the ground will do the job. The picture shows a "luxury" version, with a protection against wild animals. Will they one day become parks, such as Sydney Olympic Park which was built on top of a landfill?
Smokers don't have any excuse on Mount Gambier... The Tourist Bureau and other city offices distribute free personal pocket ashtrays where smokers on the go can store their cigarette ashes and butts.
South Australia is the only state in the country where there were no bottles or drink cans littering the land. The state government simply issued a refund policy on each container. It does work... so why has no other state implemented this idea?

Pest Control

This fence running across the Outback of Western Australia protects agricultural land from pests such as emus and feral goats. This sign was photographed between Hyden and Kalgoorlie. Australia also has a "rabbit fence" and a "dingo fence" built in the 19th century which, at 5614 km, is one of the longest structures in the world. What is a pest? An introduced species was invariably the answer we heard. So what about sheep and cows, may we ask?
This photograph taken in Berry Springs, Northern Territory signals a "detention center" for toads. In all of Northern Australia, a gigantic toad busting campaign is trying to stop toads from overwhelming the ecosystems, particularly the cane toad which grows to the size of a chicken. Not a native species, the cane toad was introduced in the 1930s in an attempt to curb the population of native cane beetle.
Plants can be pests too... Blackberries are considered so invasive that stringent quarantine inspections are carried out in some areas before letting vehicles through.