As the impact of the drought worsens, the South Australian State Government has been urged to seriously assess scientific evidence showing pollution from our major cities and industrial sites is having a severe impact on rainfall, according to Nigel Austin, rural editor for The Australian (24/10/2006, p.25).
Cloud activity affected by pollution: Research has shown that pollution is inhibiting rainfall by preventing the moisture in clouds from forming into droplets big enough to reach the ground. It has prompted warnings that drought is not the sole cause of Australia’s water shortage, but that polluted clouds are failing to produce enough rain and snowfall in the Snowy Mountains and Victorian Alps.
Port Augusta power station an example: Murray Darling Association general manager Ray Najar said the research had credible arguments and needed to be assessed. He said the research showed pollution from Port Augusta power station, Port Pirie smelter and the Adelaide city environment was reducing rainfall.
Kwinana takes its toll on Perth: "A good example is Perth, where an average of 338mm of rain fell until 1974-75 when the Kwinana Power stations and refinery came on stream," he said. "Since then, only 167mm of rain has fallen each year."
The Advertiser, 24/10/2006, p.25
Source: Erisk Net