On-farm Emergency Water Infrastructure Rebate Scheme

The Australian Government has committed up to $50 million of funding to expand the On-farm Emergency Water Infrastructure Rebate Scheme to 30 June 2022. Due to the popularity of the scheme we have doubled the Australian Government funding to $100 million.

The expanded scheme will include co-funding arrangements with states and territories. Read our Minister’s media releases: $50 million boost to successful drought water infrastructure rebate (2 October 2020) and On-farm Emergency Water Infrastructure Rebate Scheme extended further 12 months (21 April 2021).

This scheme helps Australian farmers to better prepare, respond to and recover from drought.

Primary producers and horticulture farmers can apply for rebates to buy and install on-farm water infrastructure to water livestock and permanent plantings.

Eligible farmers can claim up to 25% (of which at least 50% of the rebate will be provided by the relevant state or territory government) of expenses for on-farm water infrastructure up to a maximum total rebate of $25,000. The scheme will close on 30 June 2022 or when the funding is exhausted, whichever occurs first.

How to access rebates

State and territory governments administer and deliver the rebates.

We are negotiating with state and territories on their participation in the scheme.

Please refer to your state or territory’s website for updates.

Who can apply

You must be:

  • a primary producer or horticulture farmer (as defined by your state or territory)
  • a property owner, share farmer or lease holder
  • in an area defined as drought affected (visit your state or territory’s website for details)
  • in the grazing or horticulture industries.

Eligible expenses

Your new infrastructure must be:

  • for your own grazing livestock or permanent plantings (rebates do not apply to agisted stock)
  • purchased and installed for an animal welfare or permanent planting need and to improve your drought resilience.

Rebates will be 25% for eligible expenses or up to a maximum total rebate of $25,000.

Primary producers

Eligible expenses for primary producers must relate to:

  • buying and installing
    • pipes
    • water storage devices such as tanks and troughs associated with stock watering
    • water pumps and associated electronic systems to manage water delivery
  • desilting dams
  • drilling new stock water bores and associated power supply such as generators.

Water infrastructure to support livestock watering must be purchased after 30 June 2018.

Horticulture farmers

Eligible expenses for horticulture farmers must relate to:

  • desilting dams
  • drilling new groundwater bores and associated power supply such as generators.

Water infrastructure to support permanent plantings must be purchased after 30 June 2019.

Benefits

Benefits of the scheme include reducing the impact of drought and improving drought resilience through:

  • increasing flexibility in land management
  • increasing productivity
  • protecting high value assets
  • mitigating degradation of natural watering points
  • addressing animal welfare and permanent planting needs.

Other drought initiatives

We help farmers and communities with a range of on and off-farm challenges, including drought. See other drought and rural initiatives.

Last reviewed: 21 April 2021
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