More support for farmers facing drought, climate change
GRAZIERS will have more help managing drought and changing climates as the Climate Mates program doubles the number of mates across Queensland.
Department of Agriculture and Fisheries Deputy Director-General Bernadette Ditchfield said Climate Mates combined its local industry knowledge with climate information to assist producers in integrating climate tools into their decision making.
“The coming season may provide some much needed relief rain for many regions, and having Climate Mates can provide a better understanding of climate variability and help capitalise on any potential improved situation,” she said.
“Climate Mates are regionally located and established in their communities, with many of them living on-property and understanding the main issues impacting the grazing industry in their region.”
Ms Ditchfield said Climate Mates would double from eight to 16, joining those already based across Queensland and providing the opportunity to reach more producers.
Central Queensland Climate Mate Peter Crawford presented at a workshop at Alpha earlier this year, where the participants managed a significant area of grazing country with a total herd of over 20,000 cattle.
“The seasonal climate outlook and information on the regionally relevant climate drivers were well received, with most participants indicated they’d look at the range of climate products and websites regularly as part of their grazing risk management strategy,” Mr Crawford said.
“A post-workshop evaluation showed a very positive reaction and substantial improvement in understanding the main climate drivers and some improved ability to carry out their own seasonal forecasting.”
Eight new Climate Mates have been appointed to:
- Border Rivers/Maranoa
- Central Queensland
- Channel Country
- South East Queensland
- Victoria River District (NT)
- Gascoyne (WA)
Climate Mates is part of the $9 million Northern Australia Climate Program (NACP), which helps the grazing industry better manage drought and climate risks through a range of research, development and extension activities.
NACP is a partnership between the Queensland Government, University of Southern Queensland, and Meat and Livestock Australia Donor Company (MDC) with extra on-ground support from the Northern Territory and Western Australian governments, Rangelands NRM, Northern Gulf NRM and the Fitzroy Basin Association.
“NACP is one of nine current projects under the $21m Drought and Climate Adaptation Program (DCAP) that brings together the best climate scientists, climate advisers, and cutting-edge researchers in the state, nationally and globally to help Queensland primary producers better manage drought and climate impacts,” Minister for Agricultural Industry Development and Fisheries Mark Furner said.
Visit the website to find your local Climate Mate or for more information on NACP.