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Wednesday, 1 August 1906
Page: 2159

Mr KELLY (Wentworth) . - I believe that it is generally agreed among' meteorologists, and also among honorable: members, that the wider our sources of information the longer the period for which forecasts of weather changes can be given.

Mr McColl - And the more correct the forecasts

Mr KELLY - Quite so. With a wider source of information, our organization should not be so liable to make an error because of an entirely local disturbance. The Indian Government have already recognised that fact, and are anxious to enter into a system of reciprocity with the Australian States.

Mr Fisher - He would have one at the North Pole, and also at the South Pole, if he could.

Mr KELLY - I recommend to the honorable member a statement that appeared in the Sydney Daily Telegraph, of 18th May last, to the effect that the Government Meteorologist - who has frequently urged the desirability of receiving telegraphic data from as wide an area as possible for weather forecast purposes, has received a communication from the DirectorGeneral of Indian Observatories, requesting cablegrams showing periodic changes in the distribution o£ atmospheric pressure over Australia, in order to assist in the construction of their monsoon or seasonal forecasts; .further, that the cost of such cablegrams is to be borne by the Government of India.

The arrangements entered into in a case of that kind would be for reciprocal advantages.

Mr Fisher - I do not object to the proposal, but I wish to know whether it is not mere redundancy.

Mr KELLY - No; the point is that if it is, then paragraph c of clause 5 is also a redundancy. If that paragraph be allowed to stand without some such amendment as I propose, it may possibly be read as curtailing the Government agencies in this very direction. Every one will admit the necessity to secure information from as wide a source as possible. The immense value of the information to be obtained from India will present itself to every one who remembers how intimately our seasonal rains are associated with the monsoons which come from the equator. The theory is that a lot of our moisture is deposited in the monsoonal period, and that the monsoons seriously affect the humidity of. the air in the southern part of Australia, although they do not reach here. Then the cool winds from the west and the south precipitate the moisture for which these monsoons have been responsible. That, as I have said, is a theory, but my other statements are facts which ought to be sufficient to secure the passing of the" amendment.

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