The time for reliable water infrastructure for regional Queensland is now

Published:

While the drought rages on and water supplies diminish, AgForce has urged the State Government to commit to a long-term water security strategy that ensures the water needs of regional Queensland, in particular producers who rely on the vital resource.

AgForce CEO Mike Guerin said plans to support regional Queensland to reach its full potential – including agriculture’s goal to almost double farmgate’s value to $30 billion by 2030 – hinged on the availability, reliability and affordability of its water supply.

Mr Guerin was speaking at a public meeting held in Rockhampton to urge the State Government to reconsider its short-sighted decision to almost halve the capacity of the soon-to-be-constructed Rookwood Weir.

“We stand here today on the banks of the Fitzroy River and scratch our heads at the State Government’s misguided decision to ‘down-size’ the Rookwood Weir,” Mr Guerin said.

“There is no questioning the value of water, especially now. It is dust-bowl dry out here.

“The people of central Queensland, who were not consulted before the Government decided to reduce the capacity of Rookwood Weir, are rightly worried about the impact on their livelihoods and their communities, both now and into the future.

“Many producers here and in Bundaberg have invested significantly in expanding their properties or growing more valuable water-intensive crops based on having secure access to water.

“The halving of the capacities of Paradise Dam and Rookwood Weir have just placed those investments and their growth plans in jeopardy.”

Mr Guerin said the issue of water infrastructure was bigger than politics, and that he was calling on all sides to recognise the intrinsic value of agriculture, and the wider regional Queensland communities, before it was too late.

“We have an ever-growing population, which needs farmers to continue to provide high-quality food and fibre, as well as the economic and employment benefits created by exporting to the rest of the world.

“Well they can’t do it without water, and they can’t do it if the cost of accessing the water is so prohibitive that it squeezes them out of farming altogether.

“And if farmers don’t have enough water for their animals or crops, then they can’t spend their hard-earned in the main street at their favourite café or at the local hairdresser, and businesses are forced to close.

“That’s why we’re Standing Up for regional Queensland, and asking all Queenslanders, no matter their political persuasion, to stand with us.

 
Australian Government Business Business & Economy Energy & Water Environment Political Primary Industries Queensland Government
Social:   

AgForce Queensland :
Level 2, 110 Mary Street, Brisbane Qld 4000, Queensland Wide
07 3236 3100
AgForce Queensland
Showing 10+ recent articles for this business
Spotlight on water security for farmers vital for regional communities 28 July 2020 | AgForce has welcomed the LNP’s plan to reduce water prices for Queensland farmers, as well as the release of the long-awaited Great Artesian Basin Strategic Management Plan, because secure and affordable water... More information...
Senate inquiry last chance for pristine Reef and strong communities 27 July 2020 | The Senate inquiry into Reef science being held in Brisbane today is our last chance to maintain a pristine Great Barrier Reef alongside a productive and sustainable farming sector and strong regional communiti... More information...
COVID not the only animal-borne disease farmers are battling 21 July 2020 | AgForce is calling on the State Government to invest in and improve access to the vaccine for Q fever, a little-known infectious disease that causes significant lifelong health issues for farm workers. More information...
Bad science – not ‘bad’ agriculture – jeopardising the Reef 14 July 2020 | Widespread community misunderstanding about the health of the Reef – a result deliberately created by ideologically motivated players and scientific self-interest – is jeopardising not only Australia’s... More information...
State water trading scheme may hold key to agriculture-led COVID recovery 07 July 2020 | A future-looking, bi-partisan water strategy – that may incorporate a broader water allocation trading scheme – is essential if regional Queensland is to lead the State’s post-COVID economic recovery. More information...
ABSF update welcomed by AgForce, but needs to tell our positive story better 25 June 2020 | AgForce has welcomed the third annual update for the Australian Beef Sustainability Framework (ABSF) as celebrating the industry’s significant achievements, but noted that it needs to tell this good news story... More information...
State Government’s view of ag as ‘economic stabiliser’ just rhetoric? 18 June 2020 | Despite their rhetoric on Tuesday morning that agriculture would lead the post-COVID economy recovery, the Labor State Government just a few hours later showed their heart isn’t really in it. More information...
AgForce welcomes measures to support ag-driven recovery 16 June 2020 | AgForce has welcomed the Premier’s announcement of measures to support primary producers to drive Queensland’s post-COVID economic recovery. More information...
CSG insurance ban ‘could be worse than COVID’ for agriculture 15 June 2020 | News that some of Australia’s largest insurers are refusing to provide public liability cover to producers with CSG infrastructure on their properties is a “deeply concerning” development with enormous... More information...
Considering freeholding? Act quickly before costs rise! 10 June 2020 | AgForce is encouraging Queensland’s 1,300 remaining perpetual lessees to weigh up whether to freehold their properties before costs rise at the end of the financial year. More information...


comments powered by Disqus

All articles submitted by third parties or written by My Sunshine Coast come under our Disclaimer / Terms of Service