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Royalties for Regions delivers new weather stations in Central Wheatbelt

Eleven new weather stations have been installed across the Western Australian Grainbelt, including three new stations in the Central Wheatbelt, providing more accurate information ahead of the grain season, thanks to Royalties for Regions.

Member for Central Wheatbelt, Mia Davies MLA, said the new stations would complement the State’s existing 145 weather station network.

“These new weather stations will provide real-time information including rainfall, temperature, humidity, evaporation rates, and wind speed and direction,” Ms Davies said.

“Local stations provide grain growers with valuable, localised information, helping them to understand the weather in their region and help their crops reach their maximum potential.”

Soil moisture probes will also be installed in coming months to complement the weather stations, as part of the $10 million eConnected Grainbelt Project, funded by Royalties for Regions.

Ms Davies said the installations would be located on eDemonstation sites hosted by local grower groups, which would provide feedback to the project on how weather data could be better applied to help growers to deliver more productive and profitable crops.

“These eDemonstration sites provide a unique opportunity for growers, consultants and industry to get together and learn about, compare and contrast all of the decision support tools, systems and technologies available for on farm decision making.”

The eDemonstation sites in Central Wheatbelt include:

  • Corrigin Farm Improvement Group, Corrigin
  • Merredin and District Farm Improvement Group, Merredin
  • Wheatbelt Natural Resource Management Inc, Northam

Regional Development Minister Terry Redman said the eConnected Grainbelt project would enable the agricultural sector to meet growing demand and strengthen regional communities where agriculture was a major economic activity.

“The project is connecting growers to the information they need to make appropriate decisions that are tailored for their paddocks, their business, and the variable conditions they face each season,” Mr Redman said.

The weather data is available on the Department of Agriculture and Food’s online at www.agric.wa.gov.au or through the department’s Weather app.

The $10 million eConnected Grainbelt project is part of the $300 million Royalties for Regions funded Seizing the Opportunity Agriculture Initiative.

For media enquiries please contact Mia Davies MLA on 9041 1702 (Merredin Office), 9622 2871 (Northam office) or email mia.davies@mp.wa.gov.au

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Upgrades to Quairading Caravan Park outstanding, Davies

Local MP Mia Davies joined the Shire and over 100 locals to celebrate the official opening of the upgraded Quairading Caravan Park.

The Shire has completed stage one of planned refurbishments delivering 18 powered, 2 drive-through and 6 unpowered sites, along with a new ablution block, a campers kitchen, barbeque and fire pit.

“The standard to which the Park has been completed is outstanding and I’m sure it will be on all caravan and camping enthusiasts list once word gets out that it’s open for business,” Ms Davies said.

Ms Davies said the importance of having quality tourist and accommodation facilities in our country towns should not be underestimated.

“The Wheatbelt is actually one of the most visited regions in the State,” she said.

“We have a rich settler and Noongar culture and history, spectacular flora and fauna and community and recreation facilities that are second to none.

“Modern facilities like the Quairading Caravan Park will encourage travellers to stop in town, perhaps stay an extra night, go to the pub for dinner, shop at the local store and other businesses before they move on to the next town.”

Ms Davies said the Shire had leveraged Royalties for Regions funding to deliver the project.

“Tourism is a key feature of the Wheatbelt Economic Blueprint and has the potential to diversify the economy of the region,” she said.

“The multiplier effect can be significant, especially as the dollar being spent is by someone from outside the town or district.”

The Quairading Caravan Park welcomed its first customer on the day of the opening.

For media enquiries please contact Mia Davies MLA on 9041 1702 (Merredin Office), 9622 2871 (Northam office) or email mia.davies@mp.wa.gov.au

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Love hits out at DFES move to control bush fire brigades

Member for Moore Shane Love MLA has hit out at suggestions that the Department of Fire and Emergency Services (DFES) assume control of the state’s volunteer bush fire brigades.

Mr Love voiced his concerns following comments by WA Fire Commissioner Wayne Gregson and a recent ABC radio interview in which Premier Colin Barnett suggested some Local Governments were not interested in supporting their bush fire brigades and major fires were no longer a place for farmers with their individual fire units.   

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Kununurra airstrip upgrade completed

  • $5.1 million airstrip upgrade improves aircraft operations
  • Made possible by State Government's Royalties for Regions program 
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New weather stations enhance crop technology

  • 11 weather stations installed across the Grainbelt to boost 145 station network
  • Made possible by the State Government's Royalties for Regions program 
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Improvements to Corrigin’s water supply

  • $1.7 million pipeline upgrade to water supply in Shire of Corrigin
  • 3.2km pipeline upgrade to provide a more reliable water supply 
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New lease of life for club equipment

  • Clubs invited to apply for $500 towards revitalising or purchasing new equipment
  • $2m over four years for Community Sporting Club Equipment Subsidy Scheme
  • Applications open until May 13, 2016 
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Businesses get the big tick for water saving

  • More than 60 billion litres of water saved since 2007
  • Part of the State Government's Water Efficiency Management Plan program
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Shire of Katanning receives $2 million Lotterywest windfall

A Katanning heritage project is a step closer to reality, thanks to a $2 million State Government Lotterywest windfall.

The Shire of Katanning will utilise the significant grant towards the all ages playground and enhancements at Piesse Lake, as part of its extensive Katanning Heritage Centre project.

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Potato industry moves to deregulation

  • Government to repeal Marketing of Potatoes Act 1946 and Marketing of Potatoes Regulations 1987
  • WA is the only regulated potato industry remaining in Australia 
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