The Greens today cautiously welcomed the announcement by the Minister for Agriculture, Tony Burke of his intention to revamp drought relief payments.
"The review is certainly long overdue, but we need to ensure that any farm support payments are part of a wider approach that helps us move from band-aid responses to exceptional circumstances to a system of sustainable agriculture which is more climate proof," said Senator Rachel Siewert, Greens spokesperson on agriculture today.
"We need to be helping farmers to adapt to a drying and changing climate - they cannot be expected to do it alone," she said.
"We really should be focusing on improving the resilience of our farming systems to climate change. This isn't just about changing exceptional circumstances - we must recognise that farming in Australia must change in order to survive into the future."
"We need the best research on the impact of climate change, good information systems for farmers and new farming systems. A bold and aggressive approach from Government is needed," said Senator Siewert.
"The Senate has just commenced an inquiry into the ability of Australian agriculture to adapt to climate change - being undertaken by the Senate Rural and Regional committee, initiated by Senator Milne and I," she concluded.