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Pipeline secured for local towns

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Cambooya, Greenmount and Nobby are set to be connected to the Toowoomba to Warwick pipeline after Toowoomba Regional Council (TRC) gave its approval last week, subject to conditions.

The pipeline will see the townships of Cambooya, Greenmount and Nobby, as well as Clifton, connected to treated water supplied from Wivenhoe Dam via Toowoomba.

The process of planning and designing the pipeline has been an ongoing discussion for many months now between TRC, Southern Downs Regional Council and the Queensland Department of Regional Development, Manufacturing and Water.

With the main priority of the pipeline to provide Warwick with water during prolonged drought, its connections with Clifton, Nobby, Greenmount and Cambooya have not always been a foregone conclusion.

Minister for Water Glenn Butcher said, subject to some final negotiations, the Queensland Government is now in a position to meet its commitment to get the project underway and on track for scheduled completion by the end of 2026.

“Construction of this pipeline is critical to providing improved water security for the residents of Southern Downs Regional Council as well as delivering approximately 420 jobs to the Toowoomba and Southern Downs communities during construction,” he said.

Mr Butcher said pre-construction works are to begin before Christmas. The project is estimated to cost over $300 million. The pipeline will carry raw water from Wivenhoe Dam and connect with Toowoomba Regional Council’s existing water infrastructure to deliver water to Warwick.

The project is estimated to cost over $300 million. The pipeline will carry raw water from Wivenhoe Dam and connect with Toowoomba Regional Council’s existing water infrastructure to deliver water to Warwick.

While acknowledging the need for Southern Downs to have water security, TRC Mayor Paul Antonio said Council’s main priority was to the residents of the Toowoomba Region.

“While the dams are full at the moment, it wasn’t that long ago Warwick’s situation was dramatically different so we understand the importance of this project for the future of the Southern Downs,” Mayor Antonio said.

“In saying this, our focus has to be for our residents and the long-term water security needs for our community.

“This is why we requested and met with State Government representatives on a number of occasions to express the key objectives we need to be satisfied with, before giving our support to the project.

“Some of these objectives included the relocation and increased capacity of the Wivenhoe Pump Station; enlarging the pipe to connect with our southern towns and ensuring our ratepayers won’t be subsidising the supply of water to the Southern Downs Regional Council.

“While this idea was originally proposed as a way to help the Southern Downs in times of drought, we have worked hard to make sure any pipeline project benefits their Region, as well as the Toowoomba Region.”

In addition to this, Mayor Antonio said it was crucial for the project not to have any adverse effect on Toowoomba’s water security, including that existing Council infrastructure has sufficient capacity to deliver the required demand/flow.

In addition to providing water security, many residents will hope the water from Wivenhoe will bring an end to problems caused by hard water sourced from bores in the towns, particularly Cambooya and Greenmount, which in addition to an undesirable taste can cause issues with pipes, appliances and shower screens.

The Department of Regional Development, Manufacturing and Water estimates pipeline construction to start in early 2024 and continue through to the end of 2025.

On Our Selection News 24 November 2022

This article appeared in On Our Selection News, 24 November 2022.

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