Water as a National Problem. This was the land! What have we done with it?

J. L. Callaghan, Chairman of the Rural Development Board and Member of the Irrigation Commission [Brisbane; Queensland; Australia; Percy Pease (1876-1940)]
Publication details: 
[1939.] David Whyte, Government Printer, Brisbane. ['Vital Problems Queensland has to Solve'.]
SKU: 8402

12mo (24 x 15 cm), 8 pp. Unbound stapled pamphlet. Text clear and complete. On aged and creased paper, with minor loss to blank area of corner of first leaf. Two stamps on front page: 'With the Compliments of P. Pease, M.L.A.' (in 1932 Pease had become Deputy Premier and Lands Minister') and 'Enclosure' box with manuscript dates 14 June and 24 July 1939. Red-ink 1 cm accession stamp of the Webster Collection on last page, numbered 4189. Photograph on title captioned 'The seaward slopes of the mountain ranges and the coastal plains were heavily timbered with the softer timbers in rain forests." The subject of the pamphet is explained on p.3: 'What are the big and fundamental problems confronting Queensland as a primary producing State? | We hear of soil erosion, the decline in the flows of artesian water, droughts, &c. | In this pamphet, Mr. J. L. Callaghan, chairman of the Rural Development Board and Member of the Irrigation Commission, takes a long-range view of the whole situation and discusses questions of vital national importance.' P.6 is arranged like a poster, with the text in large type: '290,000,000 Gallons Daily From Artesian Bores | YET ONLY 5 PER CENT. OF ARTESIAN WATER USED', and large photograph captioned 'The artesian bore pictured above has been bubbling up in this way for 40 years. How many gallons has poured from it?' The article begins by describing 'How our problems originated': 'Before the advent of white occupation of Australia [...] plant and animal life had struck a working balance with these natural condition'. Under the section 'What man did' ('to his glory he did it - but he has now to count the cost and to givve a collective account of the sum total of his achievement') describes how 'he destroyed practically every tree, shrub, and plant that grew on any soil that could be converted into crop or grass land.' Scarce: the only copy on COPAC at the British Library, where it is incorrectly attributed to 'J. A. Callaghan'. Two copies on WorldCat (Queensland Institutions).