$1 million grant to ensure Rain-ready Rangelands across the Territory


Territory Natural Resource Management (TNRM) has been awarded close to $1 million to assist pastoralists to become drought ready as part of the Australian Government’s Future Drought Fund.


The project ‘Rain-ready Rangelands’ coordinated by TNRM is a partnership between the Northern Territory Department of Industry, Tourism and Trade (DITT), the Queensland Department of Environment and Science and The North Australia Climate Program. It will aim to facilitate the implementation of sustainable and productive land management practices for pastoralists to recover from past droughts and build resilience for future climate variability across the Northern Territory.


TNRM project officer Dionne Walsh said until recently, pastoralists in the drought-prone rangelands of the Northern Territory have had few practical tools available to implement the practices that other farmers take for granted.


“For many pastoralists, the recent severe drought was their first, and there is a strong appetite for change to be better prepared to respond to future climate and market shocks,” she said.


“However, there has been some hesitancy to implement scientifically-proven management practices due to the large jump in scale between research sites and commercial properties.”


She said the project would be delivered in three key pastoral districts of the NT: central Australia, the Barkly Tableland and the Victoria River District.


“The project will demonstrate the practical and proven drought resilient practices to improve natural capital, herd productivity, financial performance and social wellbeing across two million hectares in three pastoral districts in the NT,” Dr Walsh said.


“It will involve pastoralist peer-to-peer learning supported by long-term local grazing advisers and scientists. Impacts of the trialled practices will be measured and shared through three case studies and other communication channels, including paddock walks.”


She said the project would build on current TNRM projects such as the ‘Forage mapping for Resilient Landscapes’ program supporting Territory pastoral businesses to test the latest satellite technology for managing their feed supply and fuel loads to support improved decision-making.


“Forward-thinking pastoralists are pro-actively using proven technologies and methods for land and livestock management,” Dr Walsh said. “For many, this is driven by a desire to improve business performance, however, there is also the co-benefit of demonstrating that socially and environmentally sound management practices are being applied to the management of public assets.”


The ‘Rain-ready Rangelands’ project will be funded through a $999,192 grant as part of the Future Drought Fund: Drought Resilient Soils and Landscapes program.


More than $23 million is being invested through the Future Drought Fund in 26 projects focusing on drought resilient land management practices that will help Australia’s farmers prepare for and recover quicker from drought.


The purpose of this program is to demonstrate practices at a broad scale that will make our agricultural land more resilient to future droughts.


More information here

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