Doppler Stations Deliver Real-Time Rainfall Data For 30% Of New South Wales

Doppler Stations Deliver Real-Time Rainfall Data For 30% Of New South Wales

New South Wales Deputy Premier John Barilaro

New South Wales Minister for Primary Industries Niall Blair

Delivering Doppler Radar Coverage To Western New South Wales

Victor P Taffa

Farmers, firefighters and Western New South Wales residents will have access to vital real-time weather observations.

This will protect lives, reduce damage from fire and flood and boost business efficiency, thanks to a $24.4 Million investment from the New South Wales Government.

Deputy Premier and Minister for Regional New South Wales John Barilaro and Bureau of Meteorology New South Wales State Manager Ann Farrell announced the Doppler stations will deliver real-time rainfall data as well as wind observations across an expected 34 Local Government Areas in Western New South Wales, which is almost 30 % of the state.

Deputy Premier Barilaro signed the contract for the delivery of the 3 new Doppler radars while meeting New South Wales Rural Fire Service volunteers at the Mid Lachlan Valley Team Fire Control Centre at Forbes, who will directly benefit from the real-time data provided by the additional radar coverage.

“Right now, if you open the Bureau of Meteorology app and look at available radar options, you’ll see a big gap across Western New South Wales, an area where residents, farmers, miners and firefighters have limited access to real-time wind and rain information.” Deputy Premier Barilaro said.

“These new Doppler radars will reveal wind and rain activity across almost 321,000 sqkm, providing the real-time information Western New South Wales farmers and graziers need to make business decisions about when to sow, harvest or move stock.

“This $24.4 Million New South Wales Government investment will give farmers instant access to accurate information to make quick, critical choices and adapt plans to boost productivity, minimise risk and save money.” Deputy Premier Barilaro said.

Minister for Primary Industries Niall Blair said the Doppler investment is part of the New South Government’s $584 Million drought relief package announced by Premier Gladys Berejiklian in June 2018 to help drought affected farmers.

“I know Western New South Wales has been demanding radar coverage for many years and I am thrilled to say that we are taking action and building this critical infrastructure, which will boost the resilience of regional New South Wales during times of drought.” Minister Blair said.

Minister Blair said Doppler radar coverage will also help emergency services better anticipate and respond to fires which are sensitive to wind conditions and flooding caused by extreme wind and rain events.

“Wind data tracked by these new radar systems will help fire behaviour analysts more confidently assess areas that bush or grass fires may burn towards and potentially impact.” Minister Blair said.

“Unfortunately, we know all too well the havoc that bush fires and storms can wreak, with 33 homes lost and 24 damaged in the state’s north earlier this month and the floods that devastated Forbes and the Central West in September 2016.”

“Doppler radar data will give residents and businesses vital information in the face of such natural disasters and help emergency services anticipate areas that will likely suffer impacts and ensure resources are in place to respond.” Minister Blair said.

NSW Minister for Primary Industries Niall Blair










Bureau of Meteorology New South Wales State Manager Ann Farrell revealed optimal locations for the Doppler radar installations would be identified in the general vicinity of the Parkes, Brewarrina and Hillston-Ivanhoe regions in the coming months.

“Process for site selection will involve detailed site inspections and tests to ensure that Doppler radar performance and coverage is optimized, and is critically important to success in delivering the required services.” Ms. Farrell said.

“It is anticipated that all 3 radars will be installed and operational in 2022.”

New South Wales Farmers’ President James Jackson said the contract signing marked a significant step forward for the delivery of the 3 new radars.

“Our farmers make daily decisions when managing stock and crops. They are also at the front line when bushfires break out. The increased certainty from improved weather information gathered from these new radars is critical. We look forward to engaging with the BoM on the most appropriate locations of the Doppler radars.” Mr. Jackson said.

“New South Wales agricultural sector contributes over $14.5 Billion annually to the economy, and generates over $6 Billion in exports. With improved tools, such as these new radars, we can be confident of growing this output and continuing to strengthen rural and regional economies.”

Country Women’s Association of NSW President Annette Turner said the CWA has been campaigning on the issue for several years.

“Today’s announcement is very gratifying and we congratulate the New South Wales government on this significant investment.” Mrs. Turner said.

“Greater access to real-time weather observations is of vital importance to our farmers when it comes to managing and mitigating weather risks, but also assists emergency management and other industries such as tourism, aviation and mining.”