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  • Water deficiency declared for Salmon Gums and Grass Patch in the Shire of Esperance
  • Government to cart water for animal welfare needs in the affected areas
  • McGowan Government has provided $3.7 million funding since 2018/19 to cart emergency livestock water to agricultural communities


Water Minister Dave Kelly has today declared a water deficiency in Salmon Gums and Grass Patch in the Shire of Esperance and announced the State Government will begin carting water for eligible farmers from Tuesday March 1, 2022 for animal welfare needs. 


The official declaration follows applications from the Shire of Esperance on behalf of 10 farmers in Salmon Gums and five farmers in Grass Patch. A declaration is made as a last resort after continued dry conditions have depleted on-farm and local community water supplies. 


Water will be delivered to previously established tanks at the Salmon Gums quarry dam and two portable tanks in Grass Patch, reducing the distance farmers need to travel to source emergency livestock water. Water carting will commence Tuesday March 1, 2022.


Water carting arrangements are being managed by Department of Water and Environmental Regulation (DWER) with support from Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development and Water Corporation.


DWER is liaising with local government authorities and farmers in other dryland areas to monitor their on-farm water storage and requirements. DWER is encouraging farmers to return their farm water surveys and local government authorities to consider Community Water Supply Program grant applications in areas of need.


For Season 2022 farming advice, financial information and the Support Services Directory please visit


Since 2018/19, the State Government has provided $3.7 million to cart emergency water to water deficient agricultural communities and invested $4 million to improve community water supplies, including upgrading dams, catchments and bores.


Comments attributed to Water Minister Dave Kelly:


"Despite a wetter than average winter, the dryland agricultural region is experiencing the type of hot and dry conditions we are seeing more often as a result of climate change.


"The impact of climate change on reducing rainfall in this region is clear.


"Water being carted to Water Deficiency Declaration areas is strictly for emergency livestock use and for firefighting in the local area if required. This water should not be accessed for any other purposes.


"In light of continuing water shortages and the need to conserve this precious resource, farmers who are carting livestock water are encouraged to cart to closed storages or tanks rather than into dams where water losses are high through evaporation."


Comments attributed to Agriculture and Food Minister Alannah MacTiernan:


"This latest Water Deficiency Declaration highlights the importance of building more climate resilient farming businesses to ensure a viable future for WA's primary industries.


"Our Government is working to achieve, through our $15 million WA Agriculture Climate Resilience Fund, the WA Carbon Farming and Land Restoration Program and WaterSmart Farms project, as well as involvement in the Future Drought Fund initiatives and National Drought Resilience Adoption and Innovation Hubs." 


Minister's office - 6552 6100