Annual rainfall for the WA Wheatbelt for years 1910 to 1999 compared with 2000 to 2011.
RESEARCH has confirmed WA’s climate has become significantly drier and warmer over the past 40 years, which has seen agricultural production become increasingly sophisticated over that period.
The research will be profiled at the 2015 Agribusiness Crop Updates in Perth, hosted by the Department of Agriculture and Food and the Grains Research and Development Corporation.
Department research officer Meredith Guthrie said the analysis showed that since 1975 there had been an increase in summer rainfall, heat stress and frost risk – creating great challenges for the agriculture sector.
Dr Guthrie said while there was an overall reduction in average annual rainfall across the agricultural region, trends in seasonal climate change varied between regions.
“We found a 20 to 50 millimetre increase in summer rainfall in the eastern Wheatbelt, while on the south coast there was a 30 to 40mm decrease in autumn rainfall and an increase of more than 40mm in the western Wheatbelt. However, there was no significant change in spring rainfall,” she said.
“The number of rain events per season declined by two to four events in autumn in the South West, while winter rain events declined by four to six events in the western Wheatbelt, according to data from 1900 to 2013.”
Meanwhile, the annual mean temperature average over the State has increased by slightly more than 0.8((xBA))ºC centigrade since 1910.
Since 1950 there has been a warming trend of 0.14((xBA))ºC per decade, mostly recorded during winter and spring.
Dr Guthrie’s research also found that in the far northern Wheatbelt temperatures have increased significantly in September – a critical time for grain filling.
“Growers are adapting to this increase in temperature by selecting grain varieties that are more tolerant to heat,” she said.
To compound matters, the research also shows an increase in the risk of frost since 1975.
“We found that the number of days below 2((xBA))ºC has increased, particularly in the central Wheatbelt during August and September due to a pattern of higher atmospheric pressure over the country, resulting in less cloud,” Dr Guthrie said.
The research findings are being shared with public and private organisations to assist the agricultural sector to adapt to the changing climate and optimise long term, sustainable production.
Despite the challenging conditions, WA’s agriculture sector has continued to adapt and overcome obstacles to increase production, with a record grains harvest of 17 million tonnes achieved in 2013-14.
“WA’s agricultural industries are already responding to these changes, by sowing shorter season varieties and implementing new farming systems,” Dr Guthrie said.
“With climate models indicating further reductions in autumn and winter rainfall by the end of this century, the challenge will be to continue to pursue innovation and technologies for crop production in drier and warmer conditions.
“This could include diversification, new crop varieties, changing species and planting times, and most importantly crop management systems.”
The 2015 Agribusiness Crop Updates will be held at Crown Perth on February 24 and 25.
For further event information go to the Grain Industry Association of WA website giwa.org419论坛 or contact the office on 6262 2128.
p For more of the latest grains information watch for Regional Crop Updates. The schedule and further details are available at agric.wa.gov419论坛/ regional-crop-updates-2015 and grdc苏州美甲美睫培训学校419论坛/ Research-and-Development/ GRDC-Update-Dates
This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on 苏州美甲美睫培训学校.