Australia's drought -- the cancer eating away at farms

Australia's drought -- the cancer eating away at farms

Meantime, our farmers - the backbone of this country, the source of the very food on our tables - are crying out for help.

To ensure every drought-stricken family gets help, the government will spend $5 million for Rural Financial Counsellors to go through farmers' accounts and help them apply.

But the $190 million in immediate drought relief measures announced by the prime minister on Sunday is too little too late.

Mr Turnbull said the new package was created to keep food on the farmer's tables not to supply feed for stock. "But we have had to remove them all and bring them closer to the homestead so we can more easily feed them".

But the Government's statement today on the new changes recognises the current dry period is "one of the worst droughts of the past century", with parts of NSW receiving record low rainfall for the year to date.

Australian farmers hit by a record drought will receive 12,000 Australian dollars (8,880 USA dollars) each as part of the latest relief package for the agricultural sector, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said on Sunday.

Drought-awareness campaigner Edwina Robertson says the money isn't enough.

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"Everyone is saying it's too little, too late", she said.

"It is created to keep body and soul together, not created to pay for fodder", Mr Turnbull said on Monday. Yet again, the Prime Minister has disappointed us.

Mr Joyce, whose NSW electorate of New England has been badly affected by drought, also said reducing emissions in Australia won't change anything.

Farmers have meanwhile expressed concerns the media is too heavily focused on drought "disaster" stories, fearing it could damage the reputation of Australia's livestock industry.

"It will have no difference on the climate whatsoever - zero, zip, nothing".

"The impacts of climate change will mean that (drought and rain) events could be more extreme but they could be more frequent", she said.

And look at the kinds of academic research we fund: $468,000 for the Australian National University to "investigate warfare in the ancient Tongan state through a study of earthwork fortifications" and $340,000 for the University of Wollongong to study how "socially engaged art" can "catalyse new dialogue between farmers, scientists, environmentalists and policy makers" on the Great Barrier Reef.

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