Robert Onfray

The Grey Nomad Salute

As we have travelled around Australia, one of the things I have picked up on is waving between caravaners as they pass each other. Anyone who has travelled on more remote roads would have waved at fellow travellers regardless of how they travelled. It is an unwritten road rule, isn’t it? No one is above …

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Fabricated myths and politics are causing the mismanagement of water in the Murray-Darling Basin

“It doesn’t matter what is true, it only matters what people believe is true.“[1] Before I started our travels, I recall hearing and reading stories about the parlous state of the Murray River and its basin. These calls are always louder when there is a drought.[2]  On our trip, I have spent a lot of time …

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Lines in the sand

I recall reading an article by demographer Bernard Salt a few years ago about Australia being a continent divided by borders, lines, fences and boundaries. As I travel el around Australia I am reminded of his reference to ‘lines and boundaries’. Being a demographer, Salt referred to imaginary concepts based on social or physical elements, …

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A Redwood forest

One of the best secrets in the hills surrounding Warburton is a plantation of various softwood species planted from the 1930s. The most impressive are the coast redwoods (Sequoia sempervirens) which stand majestically at up to 60 metres tall. Called the Cement Creek plantation, the area is a significant softwood plantation. We were thrilled to …

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Some war stories

We have come across sites and stories about war during our travels, primarily associated with World War II. It is true to say I didn’t know much about these events or sites. It certainly opens your eyes to how the war was fought in Australia and how close the Japanese Imperial Army and Airforce got …

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70 years of bushfires – have the lessons learnt been ignored ?

This blog focuses on two Victorian bush fire disasters 70 years apart. It highlights a failure of governance, a failure to heed fire expert advice, a preoccupation with an emergency response model that has failed in North America and is failing forests and residents in Australia, and an arrogant contempt towards previous bushfire inquiries. This …

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Nursery times – the development of new technologies and practices

Les Baker and Ian Ravenwood write this month’s guest blog.  Chapter 11 of my book “Fires, Farms and Forests” provides the story of how AFH and North Forest Products were instrumental in developing an industrial eucalypt plantation estate on Surrey Hills. This blog offers specific details of improved nursery techniques and the creation of a …

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Riding the rail trails

During the early growth of the industrial revolution, the great steel snake spread rapidly to open up the country for access and trade. Railways were pivotal in connecting the nation. Where the railways went, towns prospered. They became the lifeblood between the country and the cities. Wool, coal, grain and milk were transported to markets …

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