The Australian Government has released the inaugural Future Drought Fund Annual Report, covering 2020–2021.
The FDF has long been presented as a flagship of the Australian Government’s Drought Response, Resilience and Preparedness Plan.
On the 1st of July 2020, eight Future Drought Fund programs designed to build resilience to future droughts were launched.
The first ever annual report has been released and it details the achievements of the Fund in its foundational year and provides a basis for seeking feedback through a submission process. It also sets a framework for annual reporting on progress and achievement.
The Future Drought Fund is expected to provide a sustainable and ongoing source of funding to make agriculture more productive and profitable and enhance the wellbeing of our farming communities and the sustainability of our farming landscapes.
In its first year, this is what the FDF claims to have achieved:
- Established 8 Drought Resilience Adoption and Innovation Hubs across Australia to drive regionally focused efforts to develop, extend, adopt and commercialise drought resilient practices and technologies. With the Hub nodes we have over 40 locations to work with farmers and communities across Australia and listen to their priorities.
- Worked with state and territory governments to establish tailored programs to deliver training to farmers on risk planning, and to develop local led community plans to manage drought risks.
- Released the first prototypes of online tools to make climate risk and resilience information more accessible and useful for farmers, agricultural businesses and communities so they can better understand drought and other climate risks.
- Partnered with the Australian Rural Leadership Foundation and the Foundation for Rural and Regional Renewal to establish programs to bolster the role community organisations, networks, leaders and mentors play in driving action to get better prepared for drought, and to support people in times of drought.
- There are currently 80 on-ground projects underway to trial and support adoption of land management practices that can lessen the effects of drought on agricultural productivity.
This inaugural annual report is part of an annual cycle of communicating and engaging with people on the Fund. It will be followed by a consultation process where people can provide their input on what works best to build drought preparedness.
Submissions are welcome on the work of the FDF. To have your say, go to this link.
The aim of the $5 billion Future Drought Fund:
- The $5 billion Future Drought Fund provides secure, continuous funding for drought resilience initiatives, with $100 million available each year to help Australian farmers, agricultural businesses and communities to better prepare for drought
- The Future Drought Fund is an important part of the Australian Government’s Drought Response, Resilience and Preparedness Plan to deliver the support Australian farmers and communities need to be sustainable and productive.
- For more information on the Future Drought Fund, here.