What SEQ drought declaration means for you
SOUTHEAST Queensland is feeling the full force of ongoing dry conditions with eight new councils and shires added to the state's drought list today.
Nearly 70 per cent of Queensland is officially in drought after the Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast, Fraser Coast, Noosa, Moreton, Redlands, Gympie and Logan were drought declared this morning.
Financial support is now available to farmers living in these areas.
WHAT IS A DROUGHT DECLARATION?
A government acknowledgment that 'poor seasonal conditions' are affecting an area, based on rainfall deficiency over a 12-month period.
WHAT DROUGHT FUNDING IS AVAILABLE TO YOU?
Primary producers living in drought-declared areas may be entitled to government drought assistance in the form of:
•Allowance towards basic living expenses for farm households
•Subsidies for freight costs up to $20,000 per property
•Rebate and deferral of 15 per cent of annual land rent
•Waiver of water license fees
•Reimbursement for electricity charges related to pumping water for farming
•Rebates for purchasing water infrastructure for emergency animal welfare needs
•Concessions for families transporting children to school via car or school bus
Farmers can apply for the Drought Relief Assistance Scheme by visiting the Queensland Government website or contacting 13 43 87.
WHAT SUPPORT IS ON OFFER?
Free and confidential financial and mental health counselling services are available to those experiencing emotional and financial stress.
Royal Flying Doctor Service Drought Wellbeing Service: 0427 288 432.
Drought and Farmer Assistance Hotline: 13 23 16.
WHAT RESTRICTIONS AFFECT YOUR AREA?
In southeast Queensland there is not currently any residential or business water restrictions.
Dam levels are now under 60 per cent and water restrictions will be introduced when levels drop below 50 per cent.
Water restrictions in southeast Queensland have not been in effect since January 2013.
WHAT DOES LIVING IN A DROUGHT DECLARED AREA MEAN FOR YOU?
Southeast Queensland residents have been advised by the Bureau of Meteorology to stay alert due to a higher possibility of heatwaves over the summer months.
Dry conditions throughout southeast Queensland are set to continue with temperatures in Logan to reach 35C by Sunday.
The Bureau of Meteorology's summer outlook has projected little chance of rain.
HOW CAN YOU BEST PREPARE FOR THE DROUGHT?
To conserve water, monitor your consumption regularly by checking for leaks, reducing your shower time and installing water-efficient shower heads and tap nozzles.