Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor has declared an adverse event for the Canterbury region, unlocking Government support for farmers and growers. Damien O’Connor says there will be funding of $500,000 for flood recovery measures which will help speed up the recovery of farming businesses, and includes wellbeing support and specialist technical advice. The funding enables the region’s three Rural Support Trusts to provide extra help to farmers, and for other flood assistance where needed. And it may not be the end of it as the government will continue to assess whether further support is required as the full extent of the flooding becomes clearer. 400 millimetres of rain has fallen on parts of the region, causing widespread flooding and significant damage to property and the road network. There are no figures for stock losses at this stage but with plenty of early warnings most animals were able to be taken to higher ground… although this video gives an insight into the challenges some animals faced.
With a state of emergency declared for the Canterbury region, other recovery measures being considered include an Enhanced Taskforce Green work programme to assist with clean-up and recovery, Rural Assistance Payments to help farmers with essential living costs, and flexibility through the Income Equalisation Scheme.