Additional Future Drought Fund funding to support expansion of climate tools into more pilot regions

25 November 2021
  • Farmers in pilot regions are encouraged to get involved in the development of two innovative digital tools to help prepare for future drought. 
  • Additional $7m funding has been made available to support the continued delivery of the Climate Services for Agriculture program.
  • The Government has now committed a total of $32m to these programs through the $5 billion Future Drought Fund.

The Australian Government is continuing to support farmers build drought resilience with the announcement of more pilot regions for the Climate Services for Agriculture program and Drought Resilience Self-Assessment Tool. 

The tools will provide Australian farmers with best available climate and resilience information to help prepare for future droughts. An additional $7 million will be invested in the Climate Services for Agriculture program, bringing the total funding for both tools to $32 million. 

Minister for Agriculture and Northern Australia, David Littleproud said prototype tools are available and we have been working with farmers and the agricultural industry in four initial pilot regions to explore how future drought and climate could impact their business and the commodities they produce.

“Today we announce four additional pilot regions for the programs including Tropical North (spanning QLD, NT and WA), Central West New South Wales, the Riverina and Goulburn-Murray, and Gippsland and Northern Tasmania.”

“These locations will supplement the engagement work that’s already underway in existing pilots in the Queensland Dry Tropics, Western Australian Wheatbelt, Condamine and Northern Tablelands, and Victorian Mallee and South Australian Riverland.

“We’ll use farmers input to continue to shape the tools, to make sure they’re practical and provide insights into how they can adapt to increase climate resilience.”

“Engagement with farmers and industry in the new pilot regions will be commencing soon. I encourage anyone in these regions who is interested in participating in the development of the tools to visit the Future Drought Fund website to find out how they can be involved.”

“Farmers outside of the pilot regions are also encouraged to get involved by accessing the prototypes on the Future Drought Fund website and leave feedback to tell us what you think.”

For more details about the Future Drought Fund visit agriculture.gov.au/ag-farm-food/drought/future-drought-fund 

Fast Facts

  • Co-design for the Climate Services for Agriculture program and Drought Resilience Self-Assessment Tool will commence in four new pilot locations from late November 2021:
    • Tropical North (QLD, NT, WA)
    • Central West New South Wales
    • Riverina and Goulburn-Murray
    • Gippsland and Northern Tasmania
  • User engagement will continue in four existing pilot regions, established in March 2021
    • Queensland Dry Tropics
    • Condamine and Northern Tablelands
    • Victorian Mallee and south-east South Australia
    • Western Australian Wheatbelt
  • The $5 billion Future Drought Fund provides secure, continuous funding for drought resilience initiatives. It will help Australian farms and communities prepare for the impacts of drought.
  • $100 million is made available each year to help our farmers and communities become more prepared for, and resilient to, the impacts of drought. 
  • This year the Government has committed a further $19m to continue the development of the Climate Services for Agriculture platform to June 2023 and the Drought Resilience Self-Assessment Tool to June 2024.