Feb 05, 2016

NQ dams focus of funding push

NQ dams focus of funding push

Townsville Enterprise has put forward a submission to secure a share of the Federal Government’s $25 million National Water Infrastructure Fund for the region.

The economic development group is advocating that the government fund feasibility studies into the establishment of a new dam at Hell’s Gate and an expansion of the Burdekin Falls Dam.

Townsville Enterprise general manager economic development Tracey Lines said securing the region’s water supply would significantly benefit a range of industries and support growth.

“We know that water security is something this region is passionate about. Ensuring this vital resource is better managed and securing long-term water supply is critical to this region developing to its full potential,” she said.

Federal Member for Herbert Ewen Jones is backing the proposal.

As Townsville, and the region as a whole, continued to experience the harsh realities of a lack of water, the need to look seriously at a long-term solution for the city’s water supply was clear, he said.

The NWIDF delivers on the Coalition Government’s commitment of $500 million under the Agricultural Competiveness White Paper to develop the nation’s water infrastructure – comprising $50 million to start the detailed planning necessary to build new water infrastructure and $450 million for capital works.

Mr Jones said 54 applications had been received as part of the current round of feasibility funding, with $25 million available.

An independent expert panel will evaluate the applications over the coming weeks.