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Building Drought Resilient Regions: Lessons from Central-Western Queensland

Phelps, D. and Whip, P. (2017) Building Drought Resilient Regions: Lessons from Central-Western Queensland. In: 19th Biennial Conference of the Australian Rangeland Society, 25 to 28 September 2017, Port Augusta, South Australia.

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Article Link: https://www.austrangesoc.com.au/data/ARSC2017/2017...


There are indications that grass-roots communities, Local, State and Australian governments are recognising the need for a framework to identify issues and solutions at a regional scale. Vulnerability theory has emerged globally as an approach to help build regional resilience, especially to climate variability and drought. Within central-western Queensland, on-going drought since 2012 has highlighted an above-average adaptive capacity, but high exposure to the impacts of drought. The economy depends on the financial success of grazing, which is directly coupled to a variable climate and high drought risk. A large proportion of the region’s town economies and population depends on the grazing industry, and shocks to the grazing economy lead to high socioeconomic impacts. The exposure and sensitivity to these shocks is far greater than in eastern Queensland which is more populous and has a more diversified economic base.
Resilience can be enhanced or undermined through a range of actions, and is generally enhanced when external parties engage with local communities to determine their needs. Socioeconomic responses which build resilience include improved infrastructure, economic diversification, enhanced governance and strengthening human capital. Socioeconomic responses which undermine resilience include a loss of decision making power, excessive population change, and maladapted management systems.
Determining vulnerability based on regional factors of:
 exposure (stress factors, exposed population, and socioeconomics);
 sensitivity (characterised by technology, socioeconomics and regional activities); and
 adaptive capacity (human capital, governance systems and livelihoods)
is recommended as a useful framework to build resilience.

Item Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Business groups:Animal Science
Keywords:drought, resilience, vulnerability, regional policy, central-western Queensland, grazing communities
Subjects:Agriculture > Agriculture (General) > Special aspects of agriculture as a whole > Sustainable agriculture
Agriculture > Agriculture (General) > Agricultural conservation
Animal culture > Cattle
Animal culture > Rangelands. Range management. Grazing
Live Archive:08 Nov 2017 02:46
Last Modified:03 Sep 2021 16:51

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