W is for … Water
As I’ve browsed through my photo archives for this alphabet challenge, I have realised that water plays a big part in our life here in Tasmania. Yes, we live on the waterfront in Hobart, a city on a river estuary. But all of our favourite places, favourite walks, involve water, either ocean, river or lake.
Tasmania relies on water for it’s energy and is usually self sufficient. Hydro electricity has been generated here for over one hundred years, utilising the natural resources of the island’s lakes and waterways.
Water is in short supply after the driest spring and summer on record. The water remaining in Tasmania’s lakes is now at a record low, down to below 14% of capacity, close to the lowest level to maintain the hydro infrastructure as well as fish populations and aquatic flora in the lakes.
Hydro Tasmania is Australia’s largest producer of renewable energy and usually exports electricity to the mainland via an undersea high voltage direct current cable across the Bass Strait, called the BassLink. The BassLink Cable is a two way connection, where Tasmania can buy back electricity if needed.
But ….. The BassLink Cable has been disconnected since December, due to a fault. Repairs will not be completed until June. So there is obviously huge concern how Tasmania will “keep the lights on” as we approach winter and higher demands for both domestic and industrial customers.
We are all hoping for significant rainfall.
To illustrate this theme, here are a few of Tassie’s waterfalls, photos that I took last winter. I’m sure there’ll be a lot less water flowing over these falls now.
Russell Falls and again in the snow.
Lady Baron Falls