Newsletter #11: February 2023

Welcome to our first newsletter of the year!

You can see that 2023 has already brought extreme flooding and extreme heat across the country, reinforcing the importance of not just drought resilience, but resilience in general and the ability to adapt to extreme climate conditions.

In our upcoming Industry Expert Series, Professor Roger Stone talks about climate variability and the need for preparedness and for land managers to continue learning about the weather and climate. You can watch his introductory video here.

As well as understanding the climate around us, understanding the soil beneath us is just as important. The National Soils Strategy supports the Australian Government’s priority of building resilience in our communities and adapting to a changing climate.

Our Regional Soils Coordinator (RSC), Dhiraj Gajera and his fellow RSC’s (who are each part of one of the Drought Resilience Adoption and Innovation Hubs across Australia), are playing a major role in improving the understanding of soils and soil management and sharing that knowledge with advisors, extension staff and land managers.

If you would like to understand more about your soil’s health or best management practices, please get in touch with Dhiraj today on 0424 018 003 or

We are looking forward to a busy and productive year ahead working with our Nodes and Drought Resilience Coordinators to deliver our Program Activities. You can see some Program updates below or find out more here

Thank you for taking the time to read our newsletter and catch up on what the team have been up to. If you have any questions about the Hub, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Keep safe and well,

David Phelps, Director


TNQ Drought Hub Director, David Phelps

Agricultural Innovation Program

Harvest Accelerator Program – Congratulations!

This month we’re excited to have two recipients who have been accepted into the TNQ Drought Hub Agricultural Innovation Harvest Accelerator Program sponsorship. 

Supported by the TNQ Hub, these local innovative founders are embarking on a 5-month program delivered by Farmer2Founders which is designed to equip high potential agtech businesses with capabilities to scale into national and international markets, deliver transformational growth to our agricultural industry and maximise the social and economic contribution in our region through jobs and revenue. We look forward to supporting and following their journey and wish them all the best success! Learn more about the Agricultural Innovation Program

Building Human Capacity

Stay tuned to our socials, website and newsletter for an announcement on when our Industry Expert Video Series is dropping!

This series will explore the careers of well renowned Meteorologist and Climatologist, Professor Roger Stone, and Queensland Government’s Department of Agriculture and Fisheries Extension Officer, Bob Shepherd. 

Roger and Bob will share their knowledge and demonstrated ability to provide specialist advice that empowers land managers and industry to make future focused decisions.

Coordination and Outreach

As part of the TNQ Hub’s ongoing governance, development and collaboration, an internal workshop was recently held with the purpose of discussing the Hub’s key achievements to date and future focus.

The workshop reinforced everyone’s commitment to continued support for land managers and communities becoming more drought resilient through each respective organisation and the Future Drought Fund Drought Resilience Adoption and Innovation Hubs.

Hub Highlight

The TNQ Hub is proud to be a partner for the Western Cape Futures Symposium to be held in Weipa from the 23rd – 25th March 2023.

The Western Cape Futures Symposium has been developed by nine partner organisations who have joined together to develop and design a program that provides an opportunity to shine a spotlight on the Western Cape region, and explore the opportunities, potential and barriers to regional development in the Western Cape, by connecting Innovators, Industry Leaders, Government, Traditional Owners, Local Business and Community.

The Symposium will also focus on some key issues impacting the region, such as the current increase in tourism and related strain on resources and infrastructure. It will also highlight the need, opportunities, and benefits that a sustainable tourism management plan could provide, and it will explore the options around transitioning towards a more diverse and sustainable economy, enabling new industry and investment into the region.

Thank you to the Western Cape Chamber of Commerce, Aurukun Shire Council, Mapoon Aboriginal Shire Council, Napranum Aboriginal Shire Council, the Weipa Town Authority, James Cook University, the Torres and Cape Indigenous Council Alliance, Western Cape Communities Trust and Rio Tinto for partnering in this event.

Know someone who wants to be involved?

What’s Next?

Apply Now! Grants, Programs amd EOI's

  • Future Drought Fund Long-term Trials of Drought Resilient Farming Practices Grants. Apply now for grants to run long-term trials of innovative drought resilient farming practices. The Australian Government’s Future Drought Fund is seeking eligible applicants to conduct long-term trials of innovative farming practices that build drought resilience. Applications are open for Long-term Trials of Drought Resilient Farming Practices Grants program, with grants of up to $8 million (GST exclusive, per application) available for projects to be delivered in the activity period, which is from 2023 to 2028. Applications close on 15 March 2023 at 9pm (AEDT). Find out more.
  • National Mentoring Program – Helping Regional Communities Prepare for Drought Initiative. A National Mentoring Program is being delivered by the Australian Rural Leadership Foundation and National Farmers’ Federation as part of the Australian Government’s Future Drought Fund Helping Regional Communities Prepare for Drought Initiative. Apart from 12 one-on-one sessions with a mentor, the program offers access to virtual leadership and personal development sessions and connects a network of people passionate about working towards thriving rural, regional and remote communities. Find out more.
  • Backing Female Founders Program. Applications are now open for two new Advance Queensland Backing Female Founders programs. The program assists female founders at different stages of the entrepreneurial lifecycle and will incorporate several initiatives to address barriers in the youth, startup, scaleup and global stages of the innovation pipeline. Two key initiatives are: Female Founders Co-investment Fund available to innovative female founded businesses undertaking a new pre-seed or seed capital raise and Accelerating Female Founders Program available to eligible organisations to develop and deliver new or existing business support programs for Queensland Female Founders with innovative businesses. Find out more
  • Beef Australia’s Graeme Acton Beef Connections Program. Beef Australia is seeking individuals who are working or involved in any aspect of the Australian beef industry, who would like to be part of a mentoring program designed to grow future industry leaders who value and practice collaboration. The 2023-2024 Graeme Acton Beef Connections Program will offer a unique mix of face-to-face and virtual activities, with one-on-one check-ins available with program facilitators and mentors. It will focus on developing the skills of young people working across all areas of the beef industry by providing training and personal development opportunities and pairing future leaders with industry recognised mentors to help them achieve their goals. Participants will also undertake an individual project that will support knowledge and skill development, career progression, and their job, enterprise and/or the beef industry. Applications for the 2023-2024 program are open. Find out more.
  • 2023 Science to Practice Forum, 6-8 June – EOI for presenters. The Science to Practice Forum brings together farmers, researchers, trusted advisors, governments, and the public to discuss innovations in drought resilience. The Forum connects participants to research and activities building the drought resilience and sustainability of Australian agriculture. It is an opportunity for collaboration and learning across programs funded by the Australian Government’s Future Drought Fund—and beyond. After successful events in 2021 and 2022, the Future Drought Fund is now seeking expressions of interest for presenters for 2023. Find out more or contact the TNQ Hub for more information.


The TNQ Hub can provide Letters of Support (LoS) to assist with your application. Please email details of your application and how it applies to future drought resilience to and we will supply a LoS if applicable.

Are you looking for funding to enable your idea to become a reality? Visit the following Regional Development Australia initiative to find grants available in the TNQ Drought Hub region.

Are you looking for funding to enable your idea to become a reality? Visit the following Regional Development Australia initiative to find grants available in the TNQ Drought Hub region.


TNQ Hub has worked with our NRM Node and industry partners to develop regional priorities. These are a useful resource in writing grant applications. 

Fletcherview Research Station

TNQ Drought Hub Nodes


The Long Paddock is a Queensland Government initiative that has provided climate and pasture information to the grazing community since 1995. With over 17,000 visits per month (on average), the site provides access to rainfall and pasture outlooks and decision support tools to support land management decision making and planning for land holders, education, consultants and extension officers.

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