Business case backs Big Rocks Weir to unlock North Queensland’s potential
The Big Rocks Weir business case was released to the Australian and Queensland Governments today, marking an important milestone in delivering more irrigation and water security for North Queensland.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack said the Australian Government stood ready to deliver its commitment of up to $30 million for half the construction costs of the Big Rocks Weir.
“The Big Rocks Weir business case demonstrates just how important this project will be for the Charters Towers region and for Queensland,” the Deputy Prime Minister said.
“More than 5000 hectares of agricultural land can be irrigated, supporting more than 150 jobs during construction and more than 100 jobs in the agricultural industry.
“The irrigation will produce high value agricultural produce such as avocados, macadamias and citrus.
“The Australian Government’s $30 million commitment to build Big Rocks Weir has been on the books since 2018 and now we are seeking to partner with the State Government.”
Federal Member for Herbert Phillip Thompson said it was time for the Queensland Government to match the commitment to enable construction of the $60 million project.
“Queenslanders need their State Labor Government to come to the table now so that we can start getting shovels in the ground as soon as possible,” he said.
“I am asking the Queensland Minister for Natural Resources, Mines and Energy Anthony Lynham to assist the timely build of Big Rocks Weir by helping secure the necessary construction approvals and providing a sufficient water entitlement to enable Big Rocks Weir to achieve its potential.”
Townsville-based Senator for Queensland, Susan McDonald, said Big Rocks was a cornerstone piece of water infrastructure and another example of the Australian Government’s commitment to North Queensland’s regional development and the support of primary industries.
“This project has the potential to supply a minimum of 10,000 megalitres, expanding current water supply for Charters Towers and boosting higher-value agriculture production in the region,” she said.
“The development potential of North Queensland is enormous, and building Big Rocks Weir is an important step in the Australian Government’s commitment to deliver through our investments in major water infrastructure projects.”
The Australian Government funding for the Big Rocks Weir is provided through the National Water Infrastructure Development Fund.
For more information visit https://www.nqwia.gov.au/
Deputy Prime Minister – Dean Shachar 0418 202 860
Mr Phil Thompson – Phil Calder 0467 444 760
Senator McDonald – Julian Tomlinson 0421 059 187