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Tuesday, 22 November 1938

Mr Forde e asked the Minister for the Interior, upon notice -

1.   When does he propose to consider, the suggestions made by Captain F. Rhodes, of the Morning Bulletin, Rockhampton, that - (a) The monsoon which visits Australia from the north be studied in exploring the possibilities of summer rains in Western Queensland, and in Northern Australia generally; (l») meteorological data, that have been collected over a long period from a large number of Northern Australian representative stations, be analysed to determine to what extent they are the result of monsoonal influences; and (c) the exchange bc made between Australia and countries adjacent to and north therefrom, of meteorological data with a view to extending our knowledge of oncoming monsoons and their possible influence on the pasture lands of Northern Australia and the western areas of States?

2.   Has he seen and considered the following articles, all of which appeared in the Morning Bulletin, Rockhampton, on the dates shown : - (a) The leading article. "Our Backward Meteorology," the Cth January, 1938; (6) reply thereto by the Commonwealth Meteorologist, the 2lst March. 1938; (c) the leading article " Our Backward Meteorology," a rejoinder to the Commonwealth Meteorologist, the 21st March. 1938. and (d) a special article "Let's be Weatherwise," by Captain F. Rhodes, the 14th June, 1938?

3.   What action does the Government intend to take in the matter?

Mr McEWEN (INDI, VICTORIA) - The answers to the honorable member's questions are as follows : -

1.   The suggestions have been considered. A considerably increased number of meteorological station reports have been received by the Commonwealth Meteorological Bureau during the past three years by radio from the Netherlands East Indies. Daily reports are being received from a number of stations in Papua and New Guinea. Monsoonal rains, whether they originate in or beyond Darwin Peninsula or in Queensland, have been and are being closely studied by the Commonwealth Meteorological Bureau.

2.   Yes.

3.   See answer to No. 1.

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