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Urannah Dam is a step closer to reality, with the Australian and Queensland governments signing a bilateral agreement to progress the project.

This follows the Australian Government’s investment last July of an additional $12.65 million towards the business case and approvals, taking our total funding for Urannah Dam to $22.65 million.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Barnaby Joyce said the Nationals and Liberals are focused on securing the region’s water future.

“The signing of the bilateral agreement is a significant step forward in delivering water security for the Broken River Valley,” the Deputy Prime Minister said.

“Water supply and security help form the backbone of so many Central Queensland communities, underpinning local agricultural and primary businesses, supporting jobs and driving economic growth.

“We are getting the job done for Central Queenslanders, and this includes delivering the water they need to live and grow into the future.”

Queensland Minister for Regional Development and Manufacturing and Minister for Water Glenn Butcher said the funding enables Bowen River Utilities to progress its business case and other early investigations into the project.

“The Queensland Government made an application for funding on behalf of proponent Bowen River Utilities in June 2021,” Minister Butcher said.

“The proposed dam and hydro-electric scheme are located in the Broken River Valley (within the Burdekin Basin) approximately 86 kilometres southeast of Collinsville and 80 kilometres west of Mackay in Central Queensland.”

Federal Member for Capricornia Michelle Landry said the transformative project stands to open up 20,000 hectares of prime agricultural land and support more than 1,800 jobs.

“This dam could help provide viable water sources to support 30 active projects and 71 new local projects, highlighting the importance of this investment for communities of Central and North Queensland,” Ms Landry said.

“The Australian Government understands just how vital the benefits of these projects could be for all these local industries, their workers and the communities that rely on them, which is why news of a signed off agreement to advance the project is so welcome.”

Federal Member for Dawson George Christensen said the business case includes detailed technical assessments and an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) to advance the project towards investment consideration.

“The current proposal for the 970 gigalitre Urannah Dam includes a water pipeline network, an irrigated precinct, and pumped hydro-electricity storage and power generation infrastructure,” Mr Christensen said.

“The Australian Government has committed more than $1.15 billion to improving water infrastructure across Queensland as part of the 10-year National Water Grid construction program.”

The Australian Government is investing in water infrastructure projects right across Queensland, including:

  • $600 million towards the restoration of Paradise Dam;
  • $183.6 million towards the Rookwood Weir.
  • $180 million towards the Hughenden Irrigation Scheme, including $10 million for the detailed business case; and
  • $30 million towards the Big Rocks Weir.

The Australian Government will continue to work collaboratively with the Queensland Government to identify, plan and deliver water infrastructure for Queensland.

For more information on the National Water Grid Fund, visit www.nationalwatergrid.gov.au.

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