Riparian Guidelines (in association with LWA)

Date Issued:2003-06-30


Cotton production has grown to become one of Australia’s most important agricultural

industries, with several regional economies supported by its development. Growing

cotton is an intensive land use, requiring cultivation of the soil, inputs in the form of

fertiliser and pesticides, and a reliable supply of water. Cotton is a significant user of

arable land and irrigation water in several catchments in New South Wales and

Queensland. In recent times, the industry has been proactive in developing production

systems that are both profitable and sustainable. For example, it has developed systems

of integrated pest management with reduced use of pesticides for dryland and irrigated

production, as well as improving water use efficiency for irrigated cotton systems.

This guide is a resource for improving riparian land management on cotton farms.

Riparian land is important because it is economically and environmentally productive.

Intensive agricultural production systems like cotton growing can affect waterways,

downstream water users, neighbours and communities. Careful management of

riparian land on cotton farms can help minimise these effects, and result in

environmental and aesthetic benefits for cotton growers and their families.

Riparian land is any land which adjoins, directly

influences, or is influenced by, a body of water.

This guide provides information on how best to manage riparian land. Different

management options are provided, with the science underpinning these options

described so that on-farm decisions can be made based on the best available information.

It is intended that the guide be used to complement existing information on sustainable

cotton production, as well as to assist the development of other products and materials.

For example, material in the guide could be used by the cotton industry, government

agencies and other groups to develop:

■ projects and activities to restore and improve riparian land;

■ best management practices, codes or plans;

■ workshops to increase awareness and skills;

■ fact sheets on specific issues of riparian management; and

■ presentations to landcare, farming and community groups.

Provided that the original source of the material is acknowledged, reproduction of parts

of the guide in other products is encouraged.

The guide has been developed by the Cotton Research & Development Corporation,

Australian Cotton Cooperative Research Centre, Land & Water Australia, the New South

Wales Department of Sustainable Natural Resources and the Queensland Department

of Natural Resources and Mines. It is recognised that today’s best practice may not be

tomorrow’s. As such, it is expected that this guide will be reviewed and further improved

from time to time, based on grower experience and new scientific knowledge.

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