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SAWIA continues to provide practical tools, guidelines and services to help the industry implement better business practices that have the added benefit of improved environmental sustainability.  Some of the main activities and issues of relevance to viticulture are included here.

Salinity Zones in the River Murray Irrigation Management Zone

A Salinity zoning policy has been developed to implement the salinity management provisions in the Water Allocation Plan for the River Murray Prescribed Watercourse. If you wish to change your site use approval, then this policy will apply and you will need to seek approval from the Department of Environment Water and Natural Resources. A fact sheet on salinity zoning can be downloaded from the DEWNR website.

Water policy

The “Water to Wine” water policy for the South Australian wine industry is based on the concept of sustainable use of water resources, and the need to better understand current and likely future pressures on and access to water for wine growing.  It addresses several areas of direct impact to our water use and these include:

  • changes in the domestic and export market outlook;
  • the continuing drought in Australia and its impact on water availability and quality;
  • development of market based water trading systems; and
  • updated projections of the impacts of climate change.

Contact us for a copy of the current Water Policy.

Carbon farming

The Emissions Reduction Fund (ERF) was introduced as part of the Commonwealth government’s 'Direct Action' policy on climate change, and creates economic rewards for farmers who reduce pollution or store carbon in the landscape. The South Australian Wine Industry Association (SAWIA) has prepared information to explain some of the more commonly asked questions about carbon farming.

The bulletin, which can be downloaded  here, provides a glossary of terms to help demystify some of the jargon and as well as key messages about the potential opportunties and benefits of carbon farming.

Guidelines for management of treated timber waste (e.g. CCA posts)

The Treated Timber Waste Management Guidelines address many of the risks and hazards associated with the management of treated timber, especially used CCA (copper chromate arsenate) vineyard posts. They also set out the recommended practices for storage and transport management in an easy to read tabular format. These practices are based on a risk analysis that was conducted using a wide range of available research and reference data that is also provided.

Download the guideline from the Resources section of this page.

Regional Climate Change Adaptation toolkit

“Climate change and Viticulture - Informing the decision making at a regional level" is designed to assist grapegrowers and winemakers understand what climate change may mean for their region. 

The toolkit booklet was developed through close interaction with a range of growers’ and winemakers’ groups, principally the Riverland Viticultural Technical Group and groups in the ClareValley; supplemented with input from industry members in McLaren Vale, Adelaide Hills and the Barossa regions.

The toolkit:

  • outlines the main sources of information on climate change projections for viticultural regions and summarises the likely impacts of climate change on viticulture
  • guides the user through a stocktake of current resources including climate, water, soil and grape varieties. 
  • outlines a simple but effective way of comparing different climate change scenarios to help demystify the impacts arising from a seemingly small rise in temperature.

The toolkit can be applied to your own locality either individually or through your regional group or association.

Download the climate change toolkit booklet.

2,4-D regulation

2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2,4-D) is a systemic phenoxy herbicide used post emergence for the control of broadleaf and grass weeds on crops, commercial and industrial areas, turf, forestry and waterways.

There are concerns about the use of 2,4-D related to the potential risk to public health, occupational health and safety, and the environment (including impacts on waterways, non-target animals and plants).

Vineyards have in the past been affected by 2,4-D spray drifts emanating from other surrounding agricultural activities.

The APVMA has suspended (17 December 2008) certain 2,4-D high volatile ester active constituents approvals and associated product registrations.

Read the complete statement on the Resources section of this page .