Fairfax Media Network

Weather News

McVeigh gets first-hand look at drought-hit regions

By Kate Stephens, Chrissy Arthur and Bernadette Young, Wednesday May 8, 2013 - 17:17 EST
ABC image
Drought-ravaged paddock near Stonehenge, south-west of Longreach in April, 2013. - ABC

Queensland Agriculture Minister John McVeigh has toured drought-affected areas in the state's west this week.

Mr McVeigh has visited several shires after one-third of Queensland was drought declared last month, including stops in Cloncurry, east of Mount Isa, and Cunnamulla in the Paroo Shire, west of Toowoomba

He says it is worrying to see how bad the situation is this early into the dry season.

"The best way to sum it up is to look at country that you'd expect to see in this condition in say October, before the wet season comes again - here we are in May - haven't really got into winter yet and we're seeing country that's in a poor and obviously dry condition," he said.

"It's got an impact for all of us over the coming months until the next wet season that everyone's very much looking forward to."

Paroo Mayor Lindsay Godfrey says it has been well over a year since there has been decent rain or a run in local rivers and water supplies are drying up.

He says it is vital there is a recognition in city areas of how serious the drought has become and how it is affecting country towns.

"Everything just stopped here virtually last February or March," he said.

"We are into this drought - but in the public eye, people in the capital cities - wouldn't be aware of just how dry it is out here - they are still thinking about floods.

"Trying to convince the wider population at large of just how things have changed in the bush is going to be a key issue for us."


- ABC

© ABC 2013

More breaking news

Sydney Morning Herald
ABC News
National Nine News
News Limited

Display Your Local Weather

Weather News

NSW weather: Forbes warned to evacuate as Lachlan River nears unexpectedly high peak

12:27 EST

At least 100 homes have been inundated with water and people have been evacuated from Forbes in central-western NSW, as floodwaters cut off roads and cause widespread damage to crops.

NSW Weather: Forbes farmers brace for extensive crop losses from flooding

12:20 EST

Farmers near Forbes in the New South Wales central west are bracing for extensive loses as their crops continue to be inundated with flood waters, which are expected to peak later today.

Canberra splashes out

11:08 EST

With a few showers and storms on the cards today and throughout the week ahead, will Canberra break it's September rain record? With Lake George looking more like a wetland than a wasteland, the additional amount of rain hasn't gone unnoticed.