Our farmers are some of the most resilient and resourceful primary producers in the world.
The Australian environment is notoriously challenging for food production and though our farmers are some of the least subsidised in the OECD (second from the bottom to be exact) they have adapted and survived to continue producing 90 per cent of our domestic food supply.
This is only going to be more difficult with a changing climate, the dreaded c-word. Fronts from the Southern Ocean have shifted south and led to a decline in rainfall for our region and much of southern Australia.
According to the Climate Council, this has increased the risk of drought conditions. But, did climate change cause this drought is not the right question.
A better analogy would be: climate change is to drought as steroids are to a football player. Steroids don't make a footy player score a try, but they let the player score more tries, more often.
Climate change is taking events that would have been and making them worse.
According to the Bureau of Meteorology, 2017 was the third warmest year on record, but how many times have we read words like that: worst, warmest, driest, longest and still no reasonable, evidence-based policy exist to manage this new reality or support farmers who are braving this new world.
Decades of political backflips over climate policy have done a disservice to our primary producers and the wellbeing of our ag-industry is directly linked to the wellbeing of our entire society.
Our state and federal governments have been pressured into offering support through this current drought, the worst in 100 years, but why does it have to become so dire before our government can take action? And how do we get ourselves to a place of consistent, evidence-based policy that lasts longer than an election cycle?
Farmers are on the frontlines and we must support them, not only through this drought but in the months and years ahead as the reality of our changing climate sinks in.
We must demand that our political leaders take the ideology out of climate policy and pay attention to what our farmers have been telling us for years: things are getting tougher.
The science is clear. Climate change is increasing the length and severity of drought and as American astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson said: "The thing about science is that it's true whether you believe it or not."
Olivia Ralph is a Fairfax journalist.