Natural resource management is the sustainable management of natural resources (our land, water, marine and biological systems) which is vital if we are to ensure our ongoing social, economic and environmental wellbeing.
Agriculture and food businesses will need to adapt to the various challenges arising from climate trends, such as increasing average temperatures and changing rainfall patterns, in addition to drought and water shortages.
Sound ecological and economic natural resource management is critical.
Natural resource management problems are extremely complex, and affect broad areas of the country over a long period of time.
For more than a decade, South Australian food businesses have had to cope with drought, severe water restrictions and uncertainty over future water supply.
In 10 to 15 years time the Australian agriculture and food sector will be significantly different from what it is today. Many of the changes are likely to be unforeseen, often with unexpected consequences.
The agriculture and food sector will continue to be affected by wider developments in the Australian economy – in addition to pressures on its natural resources. These will include:
- interest rates and inflation
- microeconomic reform
- the regulatory environment
- the taxation regime
- industrial relations, and
- interactions between the Australian and state/territory governments.
Winning better access to world markets and maintaining domestic biosecurity remains critically important to the Australian agriculture and food sector.
SA Water has also developed a program to help businesses be more efficient with water use. The Business Water Saver Program, developed under the Water Proofing Adelaide: A Thirst for Change, includes useful hints to cut water use.
Another program is Water for Good - a plan to help secure sustainable water supplies in South Australia both now and in the future.
The Department of Health has a series of fact sheets and guidelines on options such as the use of alternative water supplies (such as bore and rainwater) water cartage and recycled water use.
Want to know more?
Caring for our country
The Federal Government fund 56 regional natural resource management organisations across the country, including 8 regions in South Australia.
Building capacity (PDF 100KB)
Providing guidance to regions in integrating capacity building, this guide is a resource for regional planners, to support the adoption of a strategic and systematic approach to planning NRM capacity building activities.