fbpx
Print this page
Friday, 03 February 2017 14:56

Medium-scale drought declared

Written by 

Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy has today officially classified the drought conditions in Northland as being a medium-scale adverse event.

“This is recognition of the extreme dry conditions farmers and growers are facing, and triggers additional Government support,” says Guy.

Extra funding will now be available if required to coordinate support through local organisations like the Rural Support Trusts. In extreme cases there will also be Rural Assistance Payments (RAPs) available to farmers in severe hardship.

The announcement follows a request from local groups including the Northland Rural Support Trust and advice from the Ministry for Primary Industries who have been closely monitoring conditions.

Guy says farmers have been working hard and preparing for these conditions, but things are getting tough and there is little rain forecast for the next couple of weeks.

“There is significant soil moisture deficits, low pasture covers, low supplementary feed, and maize crops have struggled.

“Inland Revenue will also be exercising its income equalisation discretion to help provide flexibility and relief for drought-affected farmers.

“Many rural people can be reluctant to ask for help, but it is important for them to know that support is available.

“Once again this reinforces the importance of irrigation and water storage. Last year Crown Irrigation Investments announced $165,000 to scope irrigation scheme options in Northland, and in 2015 MPI contributed $75,000 towards a report examining the potential of irrigation here.”

“The Government is also keeping a very close eye on many parts of the East Coast of the North Island and supporting North Canterbury in their recovery.”

Guy made the announcement today while visiting a dairy farm near Kerikeri.

Criteria for classifying a medium scale adverse event

- There are three levels of ‘adverse events’ – localised, medium and national. These can cover events like drought, floods, fire, earthquakes and other natural disasters.

- The criteria for assessing the scale of an adverse event are:

- Options available for the community to prepare for and recover from the event;

- Magnitude of the event (likelihood and scale of physical impact), and;

- Capacity of the community to cope economically and socially impact.

More like this

Avoiding harm in the sun

With summer around the corner, farmers are being urged to take steps to lower their risk of skin cancer.

More assistance for drought and flood-affected rural communities

Farmers and growers affected by drought or floods in Marlborough, Tasman, West Coast, Canterbury, Otago and the Chatham Islands will have access to Rural Assistance Payments (RAPs), Social Development and Employment Minister Carmel Sepuloni has announced.

Managing through drought successfully

Farmers in Hawke's Bay have now experienced two successive years of bad droughts, which has stretched their farm management skills to the limit. Watching this and working with farmers to mitigate the problems are two experienced AgFirst farm consultants based in Hastings - Lochie MacGillivray and Phil Tither. They talked with reporter Peter Burke about what they have seen and what works best.

Trees and drought slow spread

Top dressing today is pretty much at the same level as it was pre-Covid, according to the Agricultural Aviation Association (AAA).

National

Hort heads for new heights

Pretty impressive - that's how Agriculture Minister Damien O'Connor describes MPI's latest prediction that horticulture exports will hit the record…

Critical worker shortages

A critical lack of workers in New Zealand is pushing the meat industry to plead with the Government to urgently…

Machinery & Products

Look ma - no hands!

Although this month's Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas is usually associated with the "geek brigade", global manufacturer John…