The South-West WA Drought Resilience Adoption and Innovation Hub (SW WA Hub) is harnessing the power of collaboration to enhance drought resilient practices and accelerate innovation and adoption.
Funded by the Australian Government’s $5 billion Future Drought Fund, the SW WA Hub has begun implementing activities such as the collaborative $4 million WaterSmart Dams initiative, funded by the FDF and the State Government.
Led by the GGA, the Hub is utilising and leveraging the power of the GGA grower group network ‘hub and spoke’ model to facilitate greater innovation from ‘the ground up’.
Grower groups are among the Hub’s more than 50 consortium Partners, which represent all sectors of the WA agricultural supply chain and are providing cash and in-kind co-contributions.
This focus on collaboration will enable the SW WA Hub to make agricultural research impactful and accessible, increasing innovation and commercialisation opportunities.
The Australian Government has expanded the remit of the SW WA Hub beyond drought resilience to agricultural innovation. However, drought resilience remains a core priority.
Vision: Thriving producers and communities adapting to our variable environment
Mission: Be a connected and trusted partner building pathways to accelerate innovation and adoption
Grant Deadline: 15 March, 2023
FDF grant round: Long-term Trials of Drought Resilient Farming Practices Grants Program
This $40 million grants program will support a limited number of long-term trials to build the drought resilience and profitability of cropping and grazing farmers.
Individual grants up to $8m are available via this program.
The purpose is to provide baseline knowledge of drought-related agricultural initiatives that have occurred in recent years and to identify ‘gaps’ where new opportunities could enhance outcomes in a hotter, drier climate.
The situational analyses and priority project topic lists are draft, ‘living’ documents.
Download each below.
Priority Project Topics
The four situation analysis reports have identified topics for drought resilience projects (addressing RD&E gaps).
These topics were workshopped with the Hub’s Regional Advisory Committees (RACs), which each prioritised topics. These topics are being groundtruthed with farmers through Regional Node Leads.
Download the priority topics lists here.
2023 Future Drought Fund Science to Practice Forum
The 2023 Science to Practice Forum will be held on June 6 to 8. More details will be provided soon.
View video recordings and read transcripts from the 2022 event here.
Projects Already Underway
The SW WA Hub has helped to attract investment into the State that directly benefits producers and the agricultural industry. This has included providing information, guidance and co-design opportunities to many stakeholders that have applied for Australian Government Future Drought Fund (FDF) grant rounds. The SW WA Hub has also successfully applied for capacity building positions that will benefit farmers and their communities.
As at October 2022, the SW WA Hub was involved with 22 projects in South-West WA worth $19 million, including co-contributions. The Hub’s involvement in these projects ranges from the Hub being the lead organisation through to investing funding into projects or maintaining contact with project representatives and communicating outcomes.
Background information about these projects is available here or view a summary of the projects in the table below:
Hub Geographical Area
The geographical area of the SW WA Hub extends far beyond what many Western Australians know as our South West region. Within this national project, the Hubs are organised into regional areas that broadly reflect the key agricultural and climatic zones across the country. The SW WA hub is essentially everything south of the Pilbara, and includes what those in the agricultural industry know as the entire southern agricultural growing region of WA.
Regional Node Leads
The South-West WA Drought Resilience Adoption and Innovation Hub has appointed Regional Node Leads, which will provide guidance on priority issues impacting the drought and climate resilience of farming systems, their industries and communities. Through nominated managers, the Regional Node Leads will help link the Hub to end users by gathering and sharing knowledge, coordinating local activities and support Hub activities. Node Lead positions are aligned with Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development office locations
|Merredin||Merredin and Districts Farm Improvement Group (MADFIG)||Michelle (Meg) Gethinemail@example.com |
0428 128 153
|Esperance||South East Premium Wheat Growers Association||Michelle Handleyfirstname.lastname@example.org |
0447 908 311
|Wickepin||Facey Group||Maree Dougallemail@example.com |
0448 103 747
|Albany||Stirlings to Coast Farmers||Kathi McDonaldfirstname.lastname@example.org |
0408 418 531
|Manjimup||Southern Forests Food Council||Jennifer Riseleyemail@example.com|
0438 984 292 or 08 9772 4180
|Bunbury||South West Catchments Council||Jeisane Acciolyfirstname.lastname@example.org |
0403 327 216
|Geraldton||Northern Agricultural Catchments Council||Kane Watsonemail@example.com |
0437 928 136
|Carnarvon||Rangelands NRM Co-ordinating Group||Sarah Jefferyfirstname.lastname@example.org |
0427 626 222
Regional Advisory Committees
The South-West WA Drought Resilience Adoption and Innovation Hub has appointed Regional Advisory Committees (RACs), which comprise skills-based representatives of agricultural industries for each of four agro-ecological zones covered by the Hub.
Through their knowledge and expertise, they will provide guidance to the Hub on priority issues impacting the drought and climate resilience of farming systems, their industries and communities. Download priorities identified to date below.
|Southern Rangelands||Mid West & Gascoyne Coastal||Wheatbelt||South West|
|Laurene Bonza (Chair)|
|Paul Shain (Chair)|
Annie van Blommestein
|Rod Birch (Chair)|
|Julia Easton (Chair)|
Hub Operations Team
Contact us at email@example.com
Hub Steering Committee
GGA has a steering committee to oversee the SW WA Hub project governance. This comprises two GGA representatives and two industry representatives chosen for their experience and broad understanding of the WA agricultural context.
National Hubs at a Glance
The eight Drought Resilience Adoption and Innovation Hubs are:
- Southern NSW Hub, Wagga Wagga (hub lead, Charles Sturt University)
- Tropical North Queensland Hub, Cairns (James Cook University)
- Southern Queensland/Northern NSW Hub, Toowoomba (University of Southern Queensland)
- Victoria Hub, Dookie (University of Melbourne)
- Tasmania Hub, Hobart (University of Tasmania)
- South Australia Hub, Roseworthy (University of Adelaide)
- South West WA Hub, Merredin Dryland Research Institute (Grower Group Alliance)
- Northern Hub, Darwin (Charles Darwin University)
Each Hub will service a broad area and will respond to the needs and opportunities in their region. A hub and spoke model will see drought resilience shopfronts across every region.
If you missed out on the 2022 Future Drought Fund Science to Practice Forum in June, you can now view recordings of the two day event via Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry here.
The annual forum brought together farmers, researchers, government, industry and community members to explore innovative tools and practices helping our regions prepare for drought.
SW WA Climate Context
Extract from BOM State of the Climate Report 2022: There has been a decline of around 15 per cent in April to October rainfall in the southwest of Australia since 1970. Across the same region, May to July rainfall has seen the largest decrease, by around 19 per cent since 1970
24 November 2022 – Australian Government media release: Solid progress through the Future Drought Fund
21 November 2022 – South-West WA Hub bursaries on offer for university students
16 November 2022 – South-West WA Hub collaborating to drive drought resilience investment
20 October 2022 – South-West WA Drought Hub announces innovation projects
23 September 2022 – New project will arm horticulturalists against a drying climate
5 September 2022 – Extension leader to join Grower Group Alliance as Adoption Manager
5 August 2022 – Expanded team places GGA and Hub at forefront of extension and adoption
30 May 2022 – Regional Soil Coordinator aims to protect and improve soils
20 May 2022 – Register now for Future Drought Fund Science to Practice Forum
11 April 2022 – GGA Media Release – Drought resilience ‘knowledge network’ kicks off
8 April 2022 – Australian Government Media Release – Future Drought Fund: $4 million for Drought Resilience Adoption and Innovation Hubs
5 April 2022 – Australian Government Media Release – Future Drought Fund continues delivering drought resilience for regional Australia
1 April 2022 – Australian Government Media Release – $23 million for landscape practices that build drought resilience
1 April 2022 – Australian Government Media Release – Digital the future of farming
21 March 2022 – Australian Government Media Release – FDF: $9 million for drought resilience experts
7 March 2022 – Making dams work again? That’s damn smart
31 January 2022 – Regional hubs to deliver soil science excellence
31 January 2022 – Australian Government Media Release – Innovation expansion for drought hubs
12 January 2022 – Applications sought for new drought resilience roles
11 October 2021 – Australian Government Media Release – Agricultural Innovation Statement released
7 October 2021 – GGA Media Release – GGA welcomes significant expansion of South-West WA Drought Hub
6 October 2021 – Australian Government Media Release – South-West WA Drought Hub to broaden its focus
6 October 2021 – Australian Government Media Release – Drought Hubs to broaden their focus
19 August 2021 – GGA Media Release – GGA appoints Director to Drought Resilience Adoption and Innovation Hub
19 April – Australian Government Media Release 2 – More Information on Program
16 April – GGA Media Release 1 – GGA to lead SW WA Hub
16 April Australian Government Media Release 1 – GGA wins SW WA Hub
South-West WA Hub Newsletters
13 January 2023
16 December 2022
21 November 2022
21 October 2022
9 September 2022
5 August 2022
17 June 2022
19 May 2022 (FDF Science to Practice forum)
6 May 2022
18 March 2022
18 February 2022
14 January 2022
19 November 2021
15 October 2021
17 September 2021
20 August 2021
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FAQ about the Future Drought Fund and the Drought Resilience Adoption and Innovation Hubs may be answered at these sites or in the media releases further below on this page:
* Australian Government – Drought Resilience Research and Adoption Program
* Subscribe to “Have Your Say” the main Federal engagement point for Hub activity
* Read the Future Drought Fund Annual Report 2021-22, that details the achievements of the Fund in its foundational year.