@ Rosalie: I agree with all of your comments however …

Comment on Another great river tree goes up in flames by Zac.

@ Rosalie: I agree with all of your comments however unfortunately some people prefer to camp in the sand than in any dwelling.
Perhaps the location of the fire was not considered at the time. It was most likely that the campers thought the tree would provide some day shade, shelter and maybe wind protection.
I do hope the fire was for warmth and was not a deliberate act of vandalism. If they burned part of the actual tree and not used loose wood near or under the tree then I would call that action vandalism. If they burned loose wood near or under the tree then obviously it wasn’t a very smart idea.
I also agree with what Alex said – the fact the riverbed has been lowered doesn’t help either. Unless someone or a group of people physically go down into the river bed to check where fires are lit, then there really can’t be much done from dusk to dawn.
Lightning up the river isn’t the answer either as wildlife will be confused from light pollution.
I guess people just need to learn to become better environmental stewards.
Understand that littering and fires too close or under trees destroy the home of wildlife and unlike shrubs, trees take decades to be fully recover from fire.

Recent Comments by Zac

Soy sauce now only from a bottlo
Cooking wine is far worse than soy sauce. Actually not really, but still has a slightly higher alcohol content than soy sauce. This is absolutely ridiculous. A lot of bureaucracy just to stop soy sauce with a 2% content.
The soy sauce will only make you thirsty for something less salty. The same goes for cooking wine. Drinking cooking wine will most likely just make you want to throw up.
What is next? All restaurants selling food with soy sauce or cooking wine must have liquor licenses? This is madness. Only in the NT.

Spying on park visitors: nothing to see here?
I have never been to the reserve, but I am sure that if any part of the park that contains: car parking, walking trails, park facilities etc anywhere either near the entrance to Pine Gap, or within say 5km of the boundary fence, then I would not be surprised that surveillance has been going on for years.
I bet there are more than the one surveillance camera. There are no doubt multiple hidden cameras (every so many hundreds of meters) or within close proximity to the entire perimeter fence looking into the reserve.
No cameras should however be installed on the park reserve’s land without the NTG’s approval. Regardless of whether or not it is necessary I would think Pine Gap have every right to have cameras along their fence perimeter or within their compound looking into the park reserve. However I would think some kind of signage should also be placed on the fence that stipulates that cameras may be present / operating in the area.
I also bet there must be a guideline in place at Pine Gap that originates from the US government that states if a civilian is found anywhere within (say a 2km radius) of pine gap then they should be questioned, regardless of what they may be obviously doing.
All of the above may also be the case for Area 51 in Nevada or any other major US base of significance.
It may be that the AFP be subject to have this same right to question civilians and that they may not be obliged to talk to the media with admitting what they do without first talking with someone higher up in command.
I also bet that a higher up personnel may not necessarily answer or waste time to frivolous scenarios unless someone had actually attempted to either cause a major protest or break into the facility etc.

AFP denies spy encounter, no comment from Defence
Perhaps there are some dodgy people out there who are impersonating police or security agents in attempt to get identification of tourists or locals, in order to then use the victims’ details illegally?
Maybe someone should film those doing the questioning, with either their mobile phone or wear a hidden camera (available from ebay).
This way there is evidence that can be used to identify who is doing what. The evidence should only then go to the police, as that way they cannot deny the actions, that is if these characters are even real AFP or impersonators.

Four weeks to comment on fracking chaos
Fracking is a terrible idea. Recently I read that there is an exploration in far North South Australia taking almost 60 mega litres of water every day out of the Cooper Basin.
This is crazy. I then read other places around have even higher quantities. What happens with all that waste water? What happens to the people who rely on water for crops or for pasture, drinking supplies?
Sure thing we can simply drill deeper wells, but additional pumps or upgraded pumps will be needed to keep pressure up where fracking just reduces current pressures.
60 mega litres a day is a lot. With the potential of various mines wanting to frack for gas etc, the water supplies and quality of living will only go down slowly.
People need to do the research, read up what has happened in America. Fracking is completely a nightmare. It’s unsustainable.
I think politicians and even anyone who thinks fracking is good should read up more on all the negatives before deciding to make a decision for the entire community within that water basin.

Tree death and the challenge of heatwaves
In the first image that is pictured with this story, it appears that gravel/sand or small stones make up the ground around the tree? You then have a hot pavement sidewalk and asphalt road base.
While the road could be painted white as per R. Bentley’s comments, the immediate ground to the base of the tree should contain mulch of some kind and drip irrigated with pipes hidden.
Sure the drip system could block up, but if the right system is installed from day one and the mulch is set down (even as a breathable eco-friendly mat) then perhaps the trees would stay better hydrated all year round.

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