Regional Australia is set to benefit today as the Australian Government gets on with the job of building national wide drought resilience.
The Australian Government has invested $3.9 billion, which will grow to $5 billion, in the forward-thinking Future Drought Fund (the Fund).
Minister for Agriculture, Drought and Emergency Management, David Littleproud, said this long-term, sustainable investment will make $100 million available each year to help our farmers and communities become more prepared for, and resilient to, the impacts of drought.
“Drought is an enduring feature of the Australian landscape. It has economic, environmental and social impacts on our farmers, communities and landscape,”
Minister Littleproud said.
“I’m excited to announce the Future Drought Fund’s programs are starting to roll out from July 2020.
“These programs will give farmers and communities the tools they need to prepare for, manage and sustain their livelihoods during droughts.
“The programs have been developed based on expert advice from the independent Consultative Committee, led by Mr Brent Finlay, a fourth generation farmer, as well as valuable input from communities and industry during last year’s national public consultation tour on the Drought Resilience Funding Plan.
“The programs will help farmers to build resilience and prepare for future droughts.”
“We are funding farm business planning, greater access to information for decision-making, adoption of research and technologies, and building the drought resilience of natural resources such as soil and vegetation in agricultural landscapes.
“Communities will also benefit through improved regional planning, strengthening networks, leadership and community capabilities and small-scale infrastructure projects.
“This is the first suite of programs to be delivered under this initiative initially for one year. We will continue to monitor and adapt programs to make sure they are building resilience and delivering for farmers and the community.
“I expect to make a further announcement on the allocation of the remaining funds after the roll out of these initial programs”.
The Future Drought Fund is an important part of the Government’s Drought Response, Resilience and Preparedness Plan to deliver the support Australian farmers and communities need to be sustainable and productive.