Saturday, July 13, 2024

WA Govt to roll out dry season taskforce

The WA Government has announced it will establish a 2024 Dry Season Taskforce to help address concerns as farmers across the state experience challenging seasonal conditions.

The taskforce will share information and identify ways in which the agriculture industry, in collaboration with Government, can support farm businesses and rural communities during current dry season challenges, which are expected to become the ‘new normal’ due to climate change.

In particular, the taskforce will consider:

  • access and availability of fodder for livestock;
  • access and availability of water for livestock and cropping operations;
  • extension and adoption of drought resilient practices across different farming systems;
  • opportunities for collaboration and co-ordination of industry, local and State Government activities; and
  • provision of evidence-based information and tools to support on-farm decision making processes.

“This autumn is already proving to be hotter and drier than previous years across much of the State, and some areas have had no real rain since spring last year. Livestock and horticultural producers are already feeling the brunt of this,” said Agriculture and Food Minister, Jackie Jarvis.

“Climate modelling is indicating we may have a late break to the season across grain growing regions, and I want to ensure Western Australian farmers have all the information they need to support critical on-farm decision making.

“This hot, dry weather is the ‘new normal’ due to the effects of climate change, and it’s absolutely vital we find new ways to tackle these challenges going forward,” she said.

The taskforce will be chaired by Wheatbelt Development Commission Chief Executive Officer Rob Cossart (pictured, right), who also led the emergency response to the Kimberley floods, in his role as State Recovery Coordinator.

Other taskforce members will be announced soon.

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