The worst drought conditions in decades are hitting some of the country’s most prominent farm houses, as the state government struggles to keep its finances afloat.
In Victoria, the worst drought in 50 years has led to a drop in farm output.
Farmers have been forced to close down and ration food and water.
In Tasmania, the drought has also forced the closure of a major port.
And in South Australia, the state’s state agriculture department has reported a drop of 20 per cent in its annual wheat crop.
While the state has been the hardest hit, farmers are finding other ways to weather their conditions.
“We have a lot of things that are happening on the farm,” Dr John Williams, Tasmania’s agriculture minister, said.
“The crop is starting to come back.
We have an irrigation system that we have built that works well for us.
We’re just getting the crop to a point where it can start to grow again.”
Farmers are also struggling to meet their energy and water needs, which has been particularly challenging.
A report by the Tasmanian Government’s Energy Efficiency Agency found that Tasmania’s electricity supply fell by 8 per cent between January and July, while water demand dropped by 11 per cent.
The report also found Tasmania had lost a significant amount of water since January.
In Victoria, drought has hit the state agriculture minister.
Dr Williams said farmers were finding other solutions to deal with the conditions.
“Farmers have been working with the Energy Efficiency Authority to manage our water use and other water needs in Tasmania,” he said.
He said farmers have also had to rely on generators for their power, which he said has been an “extra burden” for them.
The minister also blamed the drought on the state weather bureau, which is not properly equipped to forecast the state, which was an issue with the last two years.
Victoria has been hit hard by the state and federal governments drought policies, which require farmers to use more water than is legally allowed.
Since the start of the year, the Victorian government has been forced into a temporary power cut for farmers, which left farmers unable to operate their operations.
Despite this, Dr Williams said the state would not be able to continue to be a “water hog” to the rest of Australia.
Australia’s drought situation is a serious issue for many of the world’s largest agriculture producing nations, with the loss of crops and crops-related infrastructure due to drought, Mr Williams said.
The Australian Agricultural Workers Union said the government’s reliance on generators had also led to the state becoming a “crisis” for farmers.
AAPWU president John Poulter said the Victorian drought was “not just a drought for farmers but for all farmers”.
“We are seeing farmers that are facing extreme financial difficulties, but we are also seeing people that are just struggling with a lack of income,” he told the ABC.
“We’ve got to get our heads around the fact that it’s a crisis for all of us.”
He also questioned whether the drought was caused by climate change, as some farmers had been complaining about the extreme weather.
Mr Poulters said the current drought was not caused by the heatwave or by climate.
Farm and pastoral land are still growing, he said, and there were still some good harvests to be had.
“What you’re seeing is the next wave of the boom,” he added.
Topics:drought,economic-trends,environment,environmental-impact,government-and-politics,government,tas,australia,canberra-2600,vic,aestrialia-2650,vicPrime MinisterTopics:business-economics-and,environment-policy,environmentaustria,melbourne-3000,vicFirst posted June 09, 2019 07:24:48Contact David EganMore stories from Victoria