Climate Adaptation & Disaster Resilience

Growcom’s expertise in climate adaptation and disaster resilience is well-recognised within industry and across both the Queensland and Federal Governments.

Our team has extensive experience in researching and delivering climate risk assessments and adaptation planning from farm business through to industry scales. We can also assist with advice on carbon farming and emissions reduction options. Growcom plays a central role in assisting horticulture growers in preparing for, recovering from, and building resilience to natural disasters and extreme weather events.


Your glovebox guide to bushfire preparedness specific to orchardists and other horticulture crops.

The following case studies were also developed and feature different approaches adopted by horticultural growers impacted by the Cobraball bushfire:


Download your very own Horticulture Natural Disaster Toolkit which includes a list of emergency contacts, an emergency kit checklist, a Climate Risk Assessment Template and much more to help you be prepared whatever the weather.


The prevention, preparedness, response and recovery (PPRR) model is a comprehensive approach to risk management. This model has been used by Australian emergency management agencies for decades and can save your business time and money when responding to a setback, incident or disaster.

Using the PPRR model Growcom has compiled the following resources for growers.

Contact the Growcom Project Manager, Climate & Sustainability

Lene Knudsen
Project Manager, Climate & Sustainability

07 3620 3844


David Groves, a mango, lychee, avocado and starfruit grower from Bungandara, north-west of Yeppoon, shared his experience and learning outcomes at a Growcom hosted workshop after his family property sustained damaged following Cyclone Marcia on 20 February 2015.

NOTE: The following videos are intended for information purposes only. The opinions expressed are those of David Groves based on his experiences and should not be substituted for professional advice.

Lessons learned from a decade of disasters in Queensland’s horticulture industry

Queensland’s horticulture industries have survived severe storms, cyclones and floods in recent years. Some of the lessons learned from these events can help growers prepare for future extreme weather events.


Carbon Farming – Extension & Outreach. This project provided horticultural growers with tailored information and tools to pursue carbon farming, emissions reductions and carbon sequestration in their farming and packing enterprises. The project enabled growers to make informed decisions by increasing their understanding of carbon mitigation in horticulture. This has encouraged growers to consider emissions management as part of their everyday management decision.

Carbon Farming – Action on the Ground. This project demonstrated the use of nitrification inhibitors with fertilisers in subtropical horticulture production with the aim to reduce emissions of nitrous oxide (N2O), a major greenhouse gas. On-farm trials provided real-world comparisons between the growers’ current standard fertiliser practices with those employing nitrification inhibitors with the same nitrogen application rates.

Carbon & Sustainability – emissions demonstration. This project demonstrated the effects of various farm management practices on greenhouse gas emissions and soil carbon levels. Practices under investigation include minimum till, fertiliser application methods, the addition of biochar and nitrification inhibitors. Field sites were located on production farms in the Granite Belt and Lockyer Valley. (Funded by the Climate Change Research Program of the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry).

Enhancing resilience and recovery. This project investigated aspects of farm design and practice that maximise resilience to natural disasters. It also identified the steps required to enable producers to rapidly rebuild their lives and businesses following natural disasters. The primary output was a disaster recovery toolbox. (Funded by a DEEDI Rural Resilience Package Industry Grant).

Economic impact of carbon price. This project produced a detailed but easy-to-comprehend summary of the key mechanics of the proposed carbon pricing mechanism (Clean Energy Future policy). It included an analysis of the economic impacts of the projected cost increases including bottom-line impacts on farm profitability, and outline strategies to minimise exposure to the carbon price. (Funded by Horticulture Australia Limited).

Opportunities in the Carbon Farming Initiative. This project assessed opportunities for horticultural enterprises to generate credits in the Carbon Farming Initiative (CFI). Particular topics included the identification of possible activities and methodologies, an assessment of R&D requirements, estimates of the emissions abatement and carbon sequestration potential for a number of key commodity groups, and an estimate of realistic income potential from activities in the CFI. (Funded by Horticulture Australia Limited).

Critical thresholds. We collaborated with Agri-Science Queensland to assess the impact of projected temperature increases on a range of major fruit and vegetable crops. This project identified a number of crops and regions that may be impacted by climate change, and suggested practical adaptation measures to reduce these impacts.

Climate change for the apple and pear industryThis project identified the potential impacts of climate change on apple and pear production. Climate modelling was used to assess the potential climate risks across all Australian growing regions. It provided a summary of regionally-specific adaptation and management practices for changes in temperature, water availability and the impacts of pests/diseases. (Funded by Horticulture Australia Limited)

Climate change for the avocado industry. Information on the effect of current climate variability on avocado production was used to determine the potential impacts of climate change on this industry, and to identify specific management strategies that can be employed. Climate projections were used to assess the level of vulnerability in different production regions. This project also summarised key aspects of carbon mitigation policies that are relevant to the avocado industry. (Funded by Horticulture Australia Limited)

Climate RD&E review. Growcom was contracted by Horticulture Australia Limited (HAL) to review the industry’s climate research, development and extension needs. This project identified priorities for industry investment in RD&E. (Funded by Horticulture Australia Limited)

NurseryFootprint. We developed a carbon footprint calculator to suit the specific needs of the Australian nursery and garden industry. (Funded by Nursery & Garden Industry Australia)