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Wednesday, 1 August 1906
Page: 2175

Mr MCCOLL (Echuca) .- I think it would be absolutely fatal to the success of a Federal Meteorological Department if we were to associate an Astronomical Department with it. The two sciences are not cognate. The science of astronomy deals with the heavenly bodies and their movements, with which we are not vitally interested. The science of meteorology, on the other hand, relates to weather phenomena, which affect every interest in the country. The science of astronomy is an ideal one, and it is quite possible that only one or two States maycare to prosecute it. But a knowledge of meteorology affects the whole of the States. The association of the two Departments will mean that that close study of weather phenomena which is imperative will inevitably be thrust upon one side for the sake of permitting investigation into astronomical studies which, although most interesting, are absolutely of no practical value. I trust that the House will indorse the view expressed by the Minister.

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