Drought cost $1.3b

The Ministry of Primary Industries says that the drought cost $1.3b.

That makes irrigation schemes look cheap.

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One Response to Drought cost $1.3b

  1. Gravedodger says:

    Irrigation always is cheap when viewed in the rear view mirror.

    Unfortunately the troops in the trenches are nearly always unable to meet the very high costs of setting up the infrastructure.

    In the 1970s farming in Waipara, we endured a succession of dry years, but every avenue of irrigation relief was beyond the financial resources of any and all of us.
    Eventually under the enthusiastic guidance of Terry Hyler and his colleagues at Lincoln College the community settled on a water harvesting system that involved gathering water from winter rain, storing it in “turkeynest ponds” on farm, ponds that needed around 4 Ha of farms some of which were only 80 Ha in area. Ground that was always the most productive available, a fact that, coupled with what were at the time crippling additional debt costs with a recovery (not assured) of many years.

    We took our equity and departed to northern climes.

    Today the vituculture of the Waipara Valley is evidenced by its becoming world renowned but soon after the installation there were few of the landholders remaining and those who survived that initial cost imposition were those with low or non existent borrowings leading into the development.

    That is the market at work and the outcome 30 years on is in a word, revealing.

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