Research objectives It is commonly accepted that soil moisture is a critical factor in N emissions but there has been little emphasis on the management of fertiliser application and soil moisture. This study focused on the interaction between N fertiliser decisions and soil moisture content,…

This projected conducted an economic evaluation (benefit–cost analysis) of MCV’s investment for years ending 30 June 2009 to 2016. Of the benefits identified in the evaluation, the principal benefit was a general increase in farm profits. The total investment of $24.1 million in present value was estimated to produce total gross benefits of $160.3 million in present value, providing a net present value of $136.2 million. The benefit–cost ratio was 6.64 to 1 and the internal rate of return was 48.2%.

The project assessed the potential economic returns of investing a further 5 years of research and development in the MCV program, Phase V. The total investment of $13.5 million in present value was estimated to produce total benefits of $105.5 million in present value, providing a net present value of $92.0 million. The rate of return was also high, including a benefit–cost ratio of 7.8 to 1 (over 30 years, using a 5% discount rate) and an internal rate of return of 46%.

We included new ocean observations in predictions of the model for Indian Ocean Dipole development and accounted for ocean–atmosphere coupling. We compared the skill with other international models. We trialled several initialisation improvements, which is believed to be leading-edge research. Real-time analysis products are now available on the POAMA website.

The North Australian Wet Season Onset webpages has a brief description of the project details and can be found at the POAMA Experimental website. The new wet season onset webpage for real-time forecasts is now also available. This project aimed to improve the simulation and the prediction by rainfall-related products for agriculture in tropical Australia, focusing on wet-season onset and on monsoon bursts and breaks.