Looking At Landcare (26/1/2018) – Natural Disaster Declaration for Back Yamma and Cookamidgera

Hi Landcarers

You may recall that In November 2017, that sections of Back Yamma and Cookamidgera were significantly impacted by an isolated storm.

Some landholders had just commenced, or were about to commence harvest. A storm at any time of the year can have a significant impact on infrastructure, but when you are about to take off crops that are hopefully going to financially sustain your landholding for the next 12 months, a storm that brings heavy rain and hail can be devastating.

Remember that the income gained from these crops, is largely spent in our communities, so it isn’t just the landholder that suffers the impact, it is the whole community.

It is funny how social media can be your best friend, or worst enemy at times. After this event, it was a post from a friend that brought my attention to the storm and how quickly, an already lower than expected yield (due to the dry winter), can quickly change everything.

Due to this event, which from reports, included several hail storms, being so isolated and surrounding areas not receiving significant falls, most of us wouldn’t have realised that it happened.

I know that there are probably cries of the need for insurance and safeguards, and of course, many landholders have those things in place, but with last years crop already looking on the leaner side and with insurance premiums so high, sometimes there is no option but to not insure and look towards a better season the following year, using what was saved and hoping to recoup what wasn’t gained in the previous year’s harvest.

It has been my pleasure to get to know the landholders in these areas better through the process of collating information to have the event declared an Agricultural Natural Disaster and to gain more appreciation for qualities that would assist us all to make a difference in our communities.

No-one was asking for hand-outs and continuing with harvest is the priority once they could get back on the ground. Central West Lachlan Landcare are committed to assisting landholders in the Parkes and Forbes Shire to not only gain the best from their land with the lowest impact on our soils, but also gaining the best for their physical and mental health.

We are so pleased to see a positive outcome from this application and even if it only assists several landholders, that is a benefit to their operation and to our communities on many levels.

It was great to have such a good turnout for the announcement on Wednesday and we appreciate the assistance of landholders, the Department of Primary Industries, the Rural Assistance Authority, Central West Local Land Services, Parkes and Forbes Shire Councils, and Member for Orange, Philip Donato MP.

View our Media Release here

View the report via Facebook from 9 News here

View Mr Donato”s share via Facebook here

Listen to the ABC radio report from Tim Fookes on the NSW Country Hour here

Continuing with our theme of health. Landcare are taking on activities this year which promote healthy people, as well as healthy landscapes and healthy communities, as mentioned above and we are getting a team together to undertake the TITAN Macquarie Mud Run on 24 March. Find out more here.

We would love you to be part of our team! We are challenging our fellow Landcarers from across the Central West to join us as well as a special challenge to the Central Tablelands Landcarers. Early Bird closes on 31 January, but you can still book in after that date, costing more $$ though. Contact me ASAP if you are interested. We are really looking forward to it!

For more information about anything in this article, please contact Central West Lachlan Landcare on 02 6862 4914, cwllpo@hotmail.com, Facebook, Twitter or http://www.centralwestlachlanlandcare.org

Until next week, happy Landcaring!