Cropping and Climate Change in the East Coast Cluster: Impacts & Opportunities

Farming industry bodies recognise that managing climate variability in cropping businesses must become part of normal business risk management and decision-making, and that it will increasingly take place under conditions of uncertainty. Over the next two to three decades, changes to rainfall patterns are likely to be masked by natural variability in the Cluster regions. However, rainfall may occur in less frequent, higher intensity storm events that can erode soils of farms but also increase the contribution to downstream water quality impacts on the environment. On cropping land under dryland grain and oil seed production, a hotter (summer maximum
temperature) and drier (winter rainfall) climate will lead to a significant contraction of the area suitable for grain growing, which generally will shift to grazing in coming decades.

Roughly two-thirds of grain producing businesses in the Fitzroy region, for example, are mixed enterprises also running cattle, which may assist this transition. With irrigated cropping, competition and availability of water resources will become increasingly pressing.

At enterprise level, improving water use efficiencies whilst enhancing yields will be critical for adaptation. In addition, producers who develop broad advice networks and professional and personal support networks are better able to steer their businesses through prolonged unfavourable conditions. NRM/LLS groups working with industry bodies can contribute to providing valuable advice and support networks, particularly in areas of property level risk management, preparedness and maintaining natural resource condition.



Detailed Descriptions
070102 - Agricultural Land Planning
Geographic and Temporal Extents
Northern Coast, Greater Sydney, Burnett Mary, Hunter, South East Queensland, Fitzroy
Brigalow Belt North, South Eastern Queensland, South Eastern Highlands, Central Mackay Coast, Brigalow Belt South, NSW North Coast, Sydney Basin
Start 2030 Start text End 2090 End text
Attributions and Constraints
All rights reserved
CSIRO Land and Water
Bruce Taylor, Sonja Heyenga and Nadine Marshall
Bruce Taylor, Sonja Heyenga and Nadine Marshall (2015) Cropping and Climate Change in the East Coast Cluster: Impacts & Opportunities, CSIRO, Brisbane.
Bruce Taylor.