MEDIA STATEMENT: 3 February 2020

Queensland Minister for Water, Glenn Butcher, showed his support for the important Granite Belt Irrigation Project (GBIP) when he toured the Emu Swamp Dam development site on Tuesday.

GBIP will deliver a 12,000 megalitre dam at Emu Swamp, south-west of Stanthorpe, and around 120km of pipeline to provide water to almost 50 customers in the region, and to bring water security and a range of key social and economic benefits to local communities.

GBIP Chairman, Dan Hunt, led the tour to view the progress of key preconstruction works with the project on track to be delivered by late 2023.
“GBIP is excited to welcome Minister Butcher to the region, at a time when the Project is on the verge of breaking ground, with water sales finalised and all the major approvals nearing completion,” Mr Hunt said.

“The Minister’s visit is a first from the Queensland Government and demonstrates Minister Butcher understands the impact this Project will have on the Granite Belt community and its role in drought-proofing the region.

“Once operational, the dam will increase water security to the region by 40 per cent, which will be a lifeline to the community, as well as local primary producers after the depletion of the region’s water supply in early 2019.”

The Project is also expected to create 250 jobs during construction, and 700 new full-time agriculture and supporting jobs in the region which will substantially boost the prosperity of the local community.

“We are pleased to have the Queensland Government’s support for the Project, as GBIP works with local irrigators and the Federal Government to deliver Emu Swamp Dam for the Granite Belt and Southern Downs communities,” Mr Hunt said.

GBIP is funded by $23.4 million from local irrigators, the highest proportion of community investment in water infrastructure in Queensland’s history, in addition to a conditional commitment of $13.6 million from the Queensland Government and $47 million from the Australian Government.

The Project team is currently working with affected landholders in the Emu Swamp dam site and pipeline route.

Tenders for the dam and pipeline design and construction are scheduled for release in the second quarter of 2021.

Media contact: Hannah Hardy
0421 196 004