One of these things is not like the other

It’s easy to see if there’s a flood or an earthquake, but drought’s an odd one to call. When does a dry spell become a drought?

Published on Friday, December 08, 2017

NIWA recently launched a NZ Drought Index https://niwa.co.nz/climate/information-and-resources/drought-monitor which is a really useful piece of the drought puzzle. It takes into account four different measures of dryness, which are combined and categorised as:

  • dry
  • very dry
  • extremely dry
  • drought
  • severe drought.

Dry spells and droughts are part of life for many farmers across New Zealand. Farmers monitor their local conditions, plan for dry weather, and make tough decisions early.

MPI doesn’t declare droughts, but help to identify if the impacts of a drought on the primary sector should be classified as a medium- or large-scale adverse event, under the criteria in the Primary Sector Recovery Policy.  That triggers extra government recovery assistance, such as additional funding for Rural Support Trusts to help their farming communities.

As well as the NZ Drought Index, MPI’s criteria includes:

  • options available for farmers to prepare for the event;
  • the likelihood and scale of the physical impact; and
  • the ability of the local community to cope socially and economically.

NIWA meteorologist Chris Brandolino says, “It’s distinctly possible that much of the country will experience below normal rainfall through to the Christmas holiday period, and December temperatures are very likely to remain above average for all of New Zealand and the summer season as a whole.”

Check out your climate on NIWA's hotspot watch.

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News & Alerts

Dairy NZ flood information

for Otago and Southland

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Author: Terri Anderson

 

DairyNZ

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Categories: National, Otago, Southland

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After a flood

Monday, November 12, 2018

Author: Terri Anderson

Safety first

  • Don't put yourself at risk from contaminated water, damaged roads, or landslides and other hazards.
  • Look for and report broken power lines to your electricity provider. Treat all lines as live.
  • Trees may be unstable due to saturated ground and high winds.
  • Be conscious of security. Lock your car and house. Report suspicious activity to police.

Health and wellbeing

  • Throw away food and water that has been contaminated by floodwater.
  • Avoid drinking or preparing food with tap water until you are certain it is not contaminated.

Your property

  • Report flooded homes and any need for temporary accommodation to your local council.
  • Assess damage to water supply and reticulation systems. Which stock water troughs are contaminated with silt and will need cleaning?
  • Assess damage to access lanes, tracks, gateways, culverts, and fences. What flood debris needs to be cleared?
  • Assess damage to pastures and the depth and type of silt.
  • Assess available non-flooded pastures and other unaffected feed reserves.
  • Accept help when offered, and ask for it if you need it.
  • Take photos of damage and contact your insurer.
  • Your Rural Support Trust is available to call for help or info for farmers – 0800 787 254.

https://www.westlanddc.govt.nz/emergency-management

 

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Categories: National, West Coast

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Free Collaboration Community Dinner 7 November at Tauhoa Hall

the final of our series of community dinners this year - join us for a fun time

Saturday, November 03, 2018

Author: Julie Jonker
 
 

 

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Categories: Northland

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Farmer's Ball

8 December 2018

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Author: WandaLeadbeater
Get your glad rags on and join us for a night of music and dancing. Red carpet welcome, canapes and a live band.

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