Regions pull together on drought resilience planning

Kaylene Parker at workstation.

The Great Southern, Mid West and Wheatbelt Development Commissions are working with the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development to deliver the Regional Drought Resilience Planning program in Western Australia. The Regional Drought Resilience Planning Program is one of eight foundational programs under the Future Drought Fund in 2020-21.

Project manager Kaylene Parker is based at the GSDC’s Albany office and will undertake two plans:

  • The Southern Wheatbelt RDR Plan will be in partnership with local government authorities in the south of WA’s Wheatbelt region with a focus on the farming communities already experiencing significant dry season impacts.
  • The Great Southern RDR Plan will be in partnership with local governments in the region who have agriculture as a key economic driver of their communities.

The Shires of Katanning, Kojonup, Woodanilling, Jerramungup, Gnowangerup, Broomehill-Tambellup, Kent and Cranbrook have been identified as the focus area of the inland Great Southern plan and Kaylene has started initial consultations.

Key issues identified at an early stage include:

  • Provision of non-potable water for agriculture, firefighting and public amenity (public open space, ovals, streetscapes etc)
  • Scheme capacity and limitations of this supply during drought
  • Individual, organisational and community support during times of drought and water deficiency.

A plan for the northern agricultural area will be delivered out of the Mid West Development Commission. The plans will focus on innovative ways to build regional drought resilience across the agricultural sector and supporting industries, through a triple bottom line, collaborative and evidence-based approach.

Kaylene Parker can be contacted at the GSDC on 9842 4816, 0413 856 515 or at kaylene.parker@gsdc.wa.gov.au

Photo: Kaylene Parker works across the Great Southern inland and the southern Wheatbelt to develop drought resilience planning.

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