Irrigators have a fantastic opportunity to help shape industry-specific products from the Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) at the 2018 Irrigation Australia International Conference and Exhibition.

The biennial event – which includes the southern hemisphere’s largest irrigation conference with more than 80 local and international speakers – will be held from 13-15 June 2018 at the new International Convention Centre in Sydney.

One of the speakers at the renowned event is Dr Chantal Donnelly, Head of Water Resource Modelling at the Bureau of Meteorology.

Dr Donnelly’s presentation, ‘How can weather, water and climate data contribute to irrigation?’, is a conference session that aims to learn from irrigators themselves how recent developments in weather, water and climate data can contribute to planning, managing and operating irrigation.

Dr Donnelly said the interaction with on-the-ground irrigators is important.

“Although the Bureau produces a wide range of potentially useful data products relating to weather, water and climate, we’re interested to know how much of this data – beyond the standard weather forecasts – irrigators consider useful and use. We would like to put irrigators as a customer at the heart of our business and better understand what is important to them.”

Dr Donnelly said BOM is interested in what decisions are made; when they need to be made; why, where and how irrigators make these decisions; and who and what external data sources are involved.

“I encourage anyone who wants better advice or decision guidance related to weather-water-climate to participate in, and contribute to, this session.

“Only through close discussions with irrigators and agronomy consultants specialising in irrigation advice on what decisions are made, can we start to produce really tailored products that can help irrigators optimise their water use and save money.”

Dr Donnelly will also present some of the Bureau’s latest developments in weather, water and climate data.

“The irrigation industry may simply not be aware of the extraordinary developments in local-scale information on weather, soil moisture and streamflow for current and forecast conditions that have been made in the past five years.”

She said the Bureau’s new strategy for 2017-22, has a strong focus on adding impact and value to its customers.

“The ideas contributed at this session could potentially lead to data products tailored just for the irrigation industry.”

Irrigation Australia’s CEO, Bryan Ward, urges attendees to be part of the workshop.

Registrations for both the conference and the free exhibition are now open. To register or for more information, please visit

The 2018 Irrigation Australia International Conference and Exhibition will be held at the new International Convention Centre in Sydney, 13-15 June.

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