30 July 2007

When Manly rangers knock off...

and the other authorities too...
They defy the law and

  • bring their dogs almost daily on to Manly beach and Shelley Beach
  • empty their dogs especially at Lady Fairfax Walk, North Head National Park. Faeces deposits are increasing on the heath, ringtail possums are torn to death.
  • let their dogs off the leash in 'penguin areas'
  • light fires at Shelly Beach (with the vegetation of the headland)
  • scrape the shellfish of the rocks of the Manly Cabbage Tree Bay Aquatic Reserve and fish with them at Manly Beach.
  • come in boots at night, fish in the Reserve with lights on and leave with full buckets.
'9 - 5 enforcement' to be continued...

29 July 2007

National Parks for bushwalkers or vehicles?

Off to the favourite National Park, Ku-ring-ai Chase N.P. to enjoy the flora & fauna. The Salvation Walking track features wet heath lands and hanging swamps. All in yellow and pink at the moment. While the entry fee is being charged, mainly birds provide the acoustic ambiance. After that, West Head Road turns into a free roaring racing track with wildlife smeared across the road.
For the sake or re-creation it is one of those rare places that one can move their body in Sydney without inhaling toxins or having one's attention totally focused on other people's hazardous motor-cars. Our relaxed walk was interrupted by 'hell riders'. Four mature adults insulating their bodies with plastics against the environment came hurling along on huge 'mountain bikes' from behind. As it was illegal to make a racing track out of a WALKING track we did not move aside. After various verbal bullying they crashed through the delicate heath, breaking vegetation as they went and raced off. The entire track was mushed up by mountain bike tracks for any park management to see. I especially object to the riding of these vehicles on the delicate sculptured sandstone platforms which chip easily. The indigenous artifacts are lost forever this way. Another space in 'nature' converted into a free gym where the 'I, me, myself' can hurl their body around.
Hell riders " attention is fixated onto the object of your arousal and you quite easily miss things like road signs or someone stepping off from the pavement, because your attention is absolutely locked onto the competitors"
Bush walkers tread lightly and give names to all flora, fauna and land-formations.

Update: 050807 The entire Salvation Loop full of speeding 'bicycle' riders harassing walkers. The wet track ploughed up by the many bikes daily.
Result of broad daylight car-racing: Two dead wallabies on the side of West Head Road.

See also NP going to the dogs
Bikes and damage to sandstone engravings
Images: Ku-ringai Chase N.P. tessellations, bleached,drosea and tea tree-swamp (Salvation loop) mushed by heavy vehicle use. Usually frogs breed in these puddles.

25 July 2007

Heating till they drop - Manly style

In Manly, permanent summer is brought about with patio heaters on private patios, but especially in commercial drink & food establishments. Catering to smokers, they help to turn the common ground into a warm extension of the cafe/pub or restaurant. " Outdoor heaters are an extraordinary waste of energy and carbon emissions...As well as heating outdoor space they also warm the climate. Each patio heater generates 2.2 tonnes of carbon dioxide on average per year, the equivalent to driving a car for over 6,000 miles

Some places in Manly even use these unflued PATIO heaters INSIDE. As they emit nitrogen dioxide and carbon monoxide they should not be used in enclosed spaces as they have adverse health effects.(pdf) Both customers and staff are exposed to increased levels of indoor pollutants.

Elsewhere there are calls to not sell and use them. And in Manly?

24 July 2007

Noisy suburbs made unlivable

Housing is inadequate for the ubiquitous noise emissions. Law and enforcement lags behind. No usabilitiy, loss of value - unsustainability

The living and mobility architecture of Australia has not kept pace in the last few decades with the dissipation of ubiquitous (noisy) technology. With the majority still living in a petrol fuelled sub-urban sprawl along the coasts, housing quality gives in to quantity. The emerging higher density housing also has no quality indicators regarding standards and insulation.

Within the range of 'can do' is the proliferation of static and mobile mechanization and technology. Living areas are THE industrial space as such. Large Footprint mansions are constantly rebuilt, not to achieve a passive house, but to house-flip and cash in. Hence the building noise and the associated pollution never stops. The McMansions are filled up with gear & gadgets. Most are electricity or petrol powered and run in a space of seemingly endless energy. Machines the size of European smart-cars heat or cool the entire bunkers humming 24/7. The three-tonne hummers make numerous trips a day to get the 250 ml of something from the corner shop and leave an even hotter world behind. Large screen T.V.s seem to take up the entire wall and are running from dawn to dusk. Loud amplified music is generously shared with the block. The remaining Earth around the property is regularly attacked with numerous noisy petrol gadgets.

Defying the existing laws, most of these noise polluting acts are freely committed at any hour. Many of the ubiquitous machines emit low frequency noise - these unrecognised vibrations are detrimental to the well-being of life. The law and the enforcing bodies have yet to recognise that living in an industrial site and being subjected to 'domestic noise' has serious health effects, e.g. productivity and loss of habitable 'real estate'.

Commercial establishments attract customers by 'throbbing their body', rather than catering to the ear. As this process continues into the early morning hours, it also happens to throb the value and usability of the neighbouring flats (downwards).

In the absence of contemporary dwellings, law, effective enforcement and acoustic personal responsibility, one can buy 'peace & quiet' from the 'noise cancellation industry'. One can simply build a bunker, screening out 'domestic' industrial noise, transportation and (re)-construction noise. The market is sure to benefit from the arms-race of building out noise pollution. It is easier to leave behind uninhabitable urban areas, than regulate noise from 'convenient' machinery.
Acoustic domestic terror
Noisy 'Gardening'
WHO Noise guidlines
Manly Council

22 July 2007

Pines and birds at Manly Beach

Manly Beach once had sand dunes and heath vegetation on it, but now it has rows of pines. These giant conifers (Araucaria) are living fossils originating from the Mesozoic (251 to 65 million years ago). The Norfolk Island Pine, (Araucaria heterophylla) endemic to that island has been planted along the beach promenade. For 40 years they appear symmetrical in form, then the 50-70m tall giants arrange their shape according to the environmental conditions. There are other tall gymnosperms growing throughout Manly, Bunya, Hoop, Kaurie and many more.

At dusk these 'trees of life' at the beach start to become alive with the screeching of the local Rainbow Lorikeets. The giant remaining figs sound with fig birds. Lorikeets fly in large swarms over Manly screeching as they go, which is unusual for bird swarms. Suburbia is still intent to feed these creatures to death. > Black Cockatoos calling the rain
The video captures some of the 'beach corridors', where Lorikeets, Wattlebirds, White Cockatoos can still mingle.
Thanks to DotAtelier for the video

09 July 2007

Australian lead boomerang

Scooping lead and other (toxic) minerals out of the big booming Quarry, killing thousands of birds and risking the health of people is one of the extractive industies in Australia. Once the unprocessed stuff arrives in the production site China they 'add value', producing unsafe and toxic jewellery, clothes and toys which are consumed in Australia and dumped in tips. It is a small world (of toxins). Check out your local shops, markets and dwelling and make informed decisions.
Made in China Timeline via Boing Boing
Image: wall art 07 that could not emerge in Manly