More than 75% of Queensland now drought declared
More than 75% of Queensland now drought declared Kevin Farmer

Chunks of south-east Queensland now in drought

QUEENSLAND'S sprawling drought now covers more than 75.5% of the state, with chunks of south-east Queensland including Ipswich, Lockyer Valley and Brisbane now formally dry-declared.

Agriculture Minister John McVeigh said the councils of Gold Coast, Ipswich, Lockyer Valley and Brisbane would have the declarations back-dated to August 1.

The drought-declared area now extends from Mt Isa in the north west to Coolangatta on the Gold Coast.

"Unfortunately, the dry winter and heavy frosts from the cold nights have hit pastures in the south east," Mr McVeigh said.

"The drought now has a vast geographical spread across our state.

"In response, the Queensland Government has so far allocated $62 million towards assisting those farmers doing it tough.

"But this declaration will have no effect on domestic water supplies in the south east.

"The 12 dams in south east Queensland that contribute to the water supply system are currently at an average of 86 per cent of their full supply capacity."

Seqwater today said south east Queensland's water security status was "high" and added that irrigation schemes in the region are at or near 100 per cent allocation.

Primary producers may be eligible for drought relief and emergency water rebates.

The amount of support already provided through this scheme is $23.859 million in 2013-14.

For more information on rebates and assistance, click here or telephone 13 25 23.

Council areas now drought declared:

• Balonne
• Banana
• Barcaldine
• Barcoo
• Blackall-Tambo
• Boulia
• Brisbane City
• Bulloo
• Bundaberg
• Burke
• Carpentaria
• Central Highlands (part declared)
• Charters Towers
• Cherbourg
• Cloncurry
• Croydon
• Diamantina
• Doomadgee
• Etheridge
• Flinders
• Fraser Coast
• Gladstone
• Gold Coast City
• Goondiwindi
• Gympie
• Ipswich City
• Isaac (part declared)
• Lockyer Valley
• Logan City
• Longreach
• Maranoa
• McKinlay
• Moreton Bay
• Mt Isa
• Murweh
• Noosa
• North Burnett
• Paroo
• Quilpie
• Redland City
• Richmond
• Scenic Rim
• Somerset
• South Burnett
• Southern Downs
• Sunshine Coast
• Toowoomba
• Western Downs
• Winton
• Woorabinda (part declared)