Forecasting water allocations for Bundaberg sugarcane farmers

Everingham, Yvette and Baillie, Craig and Inman-Bamber, Geoff and Baillie, Justine (2008) Forecasting water allocations for Bundaberg sugarcane farmers. Climate Research, 36 (3). pp. 231-239. ISSN 0936-577X

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Limited water availability in dry cane growing regions poses a challenge to sugarcane farmers. Water allocations tend to be lower at the beginning of the water season, and are increased during the season when inflows are captured. Probabilistic information reflecting the likelihood of specified increases in water allocation is not available to sugarcane farmers. The present paper describes how seasonal climate forecasts were used to provide this information for the 2001/2002 season as part of a case study involving sugarcane farmers in Bundaberg, Australia. Water allocation forecasts were then supplied to an irrigation simulation scheduling system to provide guidance about when and how much water could be applied. This research was underpinned by a cross-institutional collaboration that engaged industry, extension officers, engineers from the water authority and scientists from agriculture and climatology. The key findings from this investigation were 2-fold: the participatory approach (1) contributed to the development of information needed by industry, and (2) demonstrated the potential usefulness of climate forecasting models, hydrological models and cropping system simulators to contribute to enhancing knowledge about water availability and application. Additional investigations are required before this technology can be operationalised.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Accepted version deposited in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Engineering and Surveying - Department of Agricultural, Civil and Environmental Engineering (Up to 30 Jun 2013)
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Engineering and Surveying - Department of Agricultural, Civil and Environmental Engineering (Up to 30 Jun 2013)
Date Deposited: 12 May 2010 03:05
Last Modified: 02 Jul 2013 23:54
Uncontrolled Keywords: adoption; barriers; participatory; irrigation; predict; Southern Oscillation; APSIM
Fields of Research (2008): 14 Economics > 1402 Applied Economics > 140201 Agricultural Economics
07 Agricultural and Veterinary Sciences > 0799 Other Agricultural and Veterinary Sciences > 079901 Agricultural Hydrology (Drainage, Flooding, Irrigation, Quality, etc.)
09 Engineering > 0905 Civil Engineering > 090509 Water Resources Engineering
Fields of Research (2020): 38 ECONOMICS > 3801 Applied economics > 380101 Agricultural economics
30 AGRICULTURAL, VETERINARY AND FOOD SCIENCES > 3002 Agriculture, land and farm management > 300201 Agricultural hydrology
40 ENGINEERING > 4005 Civil engineering > 400513 Water resources engineering
Socio-Economic Objectives (2008): B Economic Development > 82 Plant Production and Plant Primary Products > 8203 Industrial Crops > 820304 Sugar
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