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WATER CONSUMPTION (a), Agriculture industry—2008–09 and 2009–10
In 2009–10, the Sheep, beef cattle and grain farming industry group had the highest water consumption within the Agriculture industry, with 2,649 GL (or 38%). This was followed by Other crop growing (1,409 GL or 20%), Dairy cattle farming (1,216 GL or 17%) and Fruit and tree nut growing (1,116 GL or 16%) (see table below).
The largest decrease in water consumption between 2008–09 and 2009–10 within these industry groups was for Other crop growing (a 26% decrease, from 1,901 GL to 1,409 GL), while the largest increase in consumption was for Sheep, beef cattle and grain farming (a 22% increase, from 2,177 GL to 2,649 GL).
The majority of the water consumed by the Agriculture industry in 2009–10 was distributed water (3,647 GL or 52%) and self-extracted water (3,215 GL or 46%), with reuse water (126 GL or 2%) accounting for the remainder.
The highest self-extracted water consumption within the Agriculture industry in 2009–10 was by Sheep, beef cattle and grain farming (1,339 GL) and in Other crop growing (631 GL) (graph and table below). The industry groups that consumed more distributed water than self-extracted water included Nursery and floriculture production, Fruit and tree nut growing, Other crop growing, Dairy cattle farming and Deer farming.
WATER CONSUMPTION, Agriculture industry (a), by water type (b)— 2009–10
Distributed water consumption (3,647 GL) was slightly higher than self-extracted water consumption (3,215 GL) for the Agriculture industry in Australia in 2009–10. New South Wales had the highest distributed consumption (1,213 GL) of any state, followed by Victoria (1,161 GL) and Queensland (1,002 GL) (graph below).
Queensland (915 GL) had the highest self-extracted water consumption, followed by New South Wales (860 GL) and South Australia (563 GL) (see table below).
WATER CONSUMPTION, Agriculture industry (a), by water type—2009–10
Reuse water consumption by the Agriculture industry in 2009–10 was 126 GL or 1.8% of total water consumption by the industry (table above). This was an increase of 23% from the amount of reuse water consumed by the industry in 2008–09. This increase was driven by increases in New South Wales (from 33 GL to 55 GL, or 67%) and Victoria (from 29 GL to 34 GL or 17%). These two states consumed more reuse water than any other state in 2009–10. The Australian Capital Territory (4%) and South Australia (3%) had the highest reuse consumption as a proportion of their respective total water consumption. Note that consumption of reuse water by the Agriculture industry includes water from regional reuse schemes, but does not include on-farm reuse or recycling.
The highest consumption of reuse water within the Agriculture industry in 2009–10 was by Sheep, beef cattle and grain farming (54 GL), Dairy cattle farming (20 GL), Other crop growing (19 GL) and Mushroom and vegetable growing (15 GL) (see graph below). The largest increase in the consumption of reuse water within these industry groups from 2008–09 to 2009–10 was in the Sheep, beef cattle and grain farming group (from 24 GL to 54 GL).
REUSE WATER CONSUMPTION, Agriculture industry (a)— 2008–09 and 2009–10Origin of Water
The majority of water consumption by the Agriculture industry in 2009–10 originated from surface water (65%), while groundwater accounted for 33% (table below). The States and Territories with the largest percentage of water consumption extracted from groundwater sources were Northern Territory (65%), South Australia (60%) and Western Australia (44%). Surface water accounted for a large percentage of agricultural water consumption in Tasmania (89%), Victoria (74%), the Australian Capital Territory (72%) and Queensland (72%).