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Water Feasibility Study

  • 30-01-20 Update - Burnett Water Feasibility Study

    Recap of purpose, scope of study and deliverables

    Late last year Council announced the commencement of the long awaited $2 million National Water Infrastructure Development Fund – Burnett Water Feasibility Study. The study aims to identify the long-term water needs of the region and develop a shortlist of potential options for meeting those needs.  It will recommend solutions which have the potential to increase the total volume of water available and/or improve water security for irrigators, businesses and our towns.

    This update provides information on recent progress and invites the residents of the South Burnett region to participate in upcoming community sessions to help ensure our water future. 

    Timeline

    The initial study is a strategic business case which will clarify the challenges and opportunities relating to water and will develop a long list of possible water projects. The draft strategic business case will be available in March 2020. Consultation with major water users has commenced and in late March, Jacobs will consult with the community and all water users on this draft business case to ensure they have the right information and give community members an opportunity to share their knowledge and ideas.

    Consultation results, including your views and feedback, will be considered and used to support subsequent development of a preliminary business case, which is intended for completion by July 2020 and represents the conclusion of the currently funded work. This second stage of the study will develop a short-list of preferred options for the North and South Burnett Council areas. In developing the short list, consideration will be given to the technical feasibility, concept design, cost and social, economic and environmental assessments. Further consultation will occur during development of the preliminary business case.

    Although it is beyond the scope of the current study, assuming that potentially viable options are identified and funding is available, the next major step would be the development of detailed business cases for one or two shortlisted options from each council area. This process would consider and/or develop engineering designs, construction and operation costings, water pricing, environmental and social matters and details of who would build, own and operate any new infrastructure. Decisions about progressing the detailed business cases will take place once the preliminary business case is completed and the short list of potential options is available. 

    Update on progress of the project to date

    Last year a Steering Committee of the project’s key stakeholders was formed and Jacobs were appointed to undertake this Burnett Water Feasibility Study. In November 2019, Jacobs started working closely with Councils, and major water users, spending several days in the North and South Burnett talking to key stakeholders and visiting farms and potential infrastructure sites, seeking to understand the challenges faced and demand for water based on local knowledge.

    Jacobs also has commenced a review of previous studies and is working with SunWater on its long-term water blueprint for the region, which is a concurrent study. Across the region, detailed face-to-face discussions have taken place and Jacobs is considering sites for new weirs, dams and pipelines and other solutions. Initial discussions have been held with berry, citrus, cotton, fodder, nut tree, peanut and other farming enterprises.

    In South Burnett, discussions with major water users are underway and will be ongoing until March 2020. To date, Jacobs has held discussions with commercial irrigators in the Barker Barambah Water Supply Scheme and other areas. Further conversations will be held with the Tarong power station, orchardists, duboisia and meat producers and processors outside the Barker Barambah scheme. In North Burnett, Jacobs met with representatives of the Boyne River Scheme and Coalstoun Lakes, amongst others, to gather insights.

    Pleasing progress has been made in a short period, however, much work remains to be completed in 2020.

    Key next steps: Community consultation dates and locations

    A series of public meetings and workshops within our region for all current and future water users is about to commence. All residents and interested parties are invited to a Public Information and Registration Evening to be held at:

    • Kingaroy: 5:30pm-7pm on Wednesday 12 February 2020 at the Kingaroy RSL

    Community consultation meetings to hear from water users and discuss the strategic business case will take place in March as follows:

    • Murgon: 10am-12pm on Monday 16 March at the Murgon RSL
    • Blackbutt: 10am-12pm on Tuesday 17 March 2020 at the Blackbutt Town Hall
    • Kingaroy: 10am-12pm on Wednesday 18 March 2020 at the Kingaroy Town Hall

    After each public meeting, Jacobs will be available to talk to individual water users or groups from 12.30pm to 3.30pm. It is essential that water users register to attend sessions in advance so that the Jacobs team develop a meeting schedule for those wanting to speak to the team 1 on 1.

    This consultation builds on the water agenda led by Council in the past few years and follows on from our previous community work on water futures.  Further consultation will take place mid-year on the preliminary business case. If it is appropriate for any of the shortlisted options to progress to a detailed business case, further community consultation will take place during that progress, to keep you informed.

    Register your interest in participating

    The current Burnett Water Feasibility Study could identify options with the potential to transform the economic wellbeing of the South Burnett by bringing us more secure water. However, to ensure success, your input is needed to demonstrate community support. Provision of informed feedback will assist identification of the best options and support the case for possible construction of new water infrastructure in the future.

    A key goal of your input is to inform us about how much water you need, where it needs to be delivered, and how it will be used. Council asks that you register your interest by emailing your contact details to waterstudy@southburnett.qld.gov.au or call Council’s customer service team on (07) 4189 9100.

    If you have significant volumes of demand, Jacobs may contact you to organise a face-to-face meeting.

    Anyone who takes the positive step of registering their interest in this study should receive email invitations to the program of upcoming consultation meetings.

    Thank you for your interest in the Burnett Water Feasibility Study. Council looks forward to your participation and together delivering a great result for the South Burnett region. To stay up to date with the Burnett Water Feasibility Study, please visit Council's website Water Feasibility page.

    Please view the Public Information and Registration Evening / South Burnett Engagement Workshop flyer here.

  • 20-12-19 Mayoral Launch of the National Water Infrastructure Development Fund Study in the South Burnett 

    STATEMENT FROM SOUTH BURNETT REGIONAL COUNCIL MAYOR KEITH CAMPBELL

    It is my great pleasure to announce that the long awaited $2 million water feasibility study for the Burnett region has now commenced. South and North Burnett Regional Councils have together secured National Water Infrastructure Development Fund (NWIDF) funding to identify the long-term water needs of the region and assess options for meeting those needs. 

    The study aims to identify water supply options that have the potential to improve the reliability of existing supplies for towns, business and irrigated agriculture in the Burnett, to boost the economic dynamics in the region and to underpin future investment. The study will directly focus on identifying possible options to increase water availability for our region and also on key projects that may be able to improve the reliability of existing allocations.

    Even if all our existing dams were full, we do not have enough water to maximise the potential growth of the region’s economy and bring more jobs to our communities.  Increasing the availability of water in the South Burnett, will also enhance the social wellbeing and liveability of our communities.

    By mid-2020, this phase of the study – the strategic and preliminary business case – will generate a short list of the most promising water infrastructure and related options to meet the region’s key water needs. From there, the preferred options for each council area will be progressed to future phases including more detailed design and cost estimates, expected to be complete by late 2020/early 2021.

    This study will build on the water agenda led by Council in the past two to three years and follows on from our previous work with the community to engage in water futures.  This study has the potential to change the economic dynamics of the South Burnett, to enhance water security for current users, create agricultural initiatives, build new industrial opportunity and encourage future urban growth. The study will identify the most promising water infrastructure solutions and increase our chances of a real project being funded and constructed in the region.

    The feasibility study will be coordinated in partnership between South Burnett Regional Council, North Burnett Regional Council, Department of Natural Resources, Mines and Energy, and Sunwater. We were recently pleased to announce that Jacobs has been appointed as our lead consultant for the study and has extensive experience across this field.

    We are excited that the water agenda has become prominent at all levels of government. This feasibility study is one of three critical and concurrent projects that will help to shape our future water strategies.

    Two other studies are also progressing at present, exploring water options in the region. Sunwater is undertaking its Regional Blueprint on the opportunities and potential responses within the Burnett Basin over November 2019 to mid 2020, while Building Queensland is investigating long-term options related to Paradise Dam over the period to February/March 2020. As each of these studies will engage key stakeholders, coordination between the three project teams will be undertaken to ensure the exchange of learnings of mutual interest.

    View a graphical depiction of the various processes iinvolved here.

    Community engagement and participation will be a pillar for the NWIDF study and Jacobs has been asked to engage with major water users who are seeking access to more reliable water. Jacobs will conduct a series of multi layered stakeholder engagement meetings and workshops consisting of one-on-one interviews and small group meetings with current high volume water users, as well as a series of public meetings and workshops within our region for all current and future water users. This detailed stakeholder engagement commenced in December and will continue into the first half of 2020.

    The primary goal of these engagements is to understand how much water is needed considering potential costs of water, where it needs to be delivered, when and the enterprises it will strengthen.

    To make this happen, I invite you to take the journey with us and register your interest by emailing your contact details to Council. Alternatively, please call South Burnett Regional Council on (07) 4189 9100 and register your interest with our Customer Service team.

    Jacobs also welcomes any information that you may have in relation to possible projects and, in particular, any future drivers to create significant demand for bulk water.  Jacobs will contact you to organise a face-to-face meeting to understand the volume of your demand, the enterprise/s it would support, the geographical location of that demand and your preferred timing.

    I would like to thank everyone from our region for taking an interest in the Burnett Water Feasibility Study, I look forward to working with you for our water future.

    Keith Campbell

    MAYOR

  • Community engagement and participation will be a pillar for the National Water Infrastructure Development Fund (NWIDF) study and Jacobs has been asked to engage with major water users who are seeking access to more reliable water. Jacobs will conduct a series of multi layered stakeholder engagement meetings and workshops consisting of one-on-one interviews and small group meetings with current high volume water users, as well as a series of public meetings and workshops within the South Burnett region for all current and future water users. 

    Jacobs also welcomes any information that you may have in relation to possible projects and, in particular, any future drivers to create significant demand for bulk water.  Jacobs will contact you to organise a face-to-face meeting to understand the volume of your demand, the enterprise/s it would support, the geographical location of that demand and your preferred timing.

    The primary goal of these engagements is to understand how much water is needed considering potential costs of water, where it needs to be delivered, when and the enterprises it will strengthen.

    You can register to participate in the study by completing the below Registration Form, providing information on how much water you need, where it needs to be delivered, and how it will be used. Please save and forward your completed form by email, mail to PO Box 336 Kingaroy Qld 4610, or drop it in to your local Customer Service Centre.  Alternatively, please call South Burnett Regional Council on (07) 4189 9100 and register your interest with our Customer Service team.

    Click here to fill out a Burnett Water Feasibility Study Registration Form

  • DATE ACTION STAKEHOLDERS LINK
    31/10/2019 Program Introduction Meeting DNRME , SBRC, NBRC, Jacobs, Sunwater N/A
    25/11/2019 Study Initiation and Scope Meeting Jacobs & SBRC N/A
    26/11/2019 Study Initiation and Scope Meeting Jacobs & SBRC  N/A
    09/12/2019 Commence Jacobs Engagement with South Burnett major water users Jacobs & major water users N/A
    10/12/2019 Jacobs Engagement with South Burnett major water users Jacobs & major water users N/A
    17/12/2019 Mayoral Launch of National Water Infrastructure Development Fund Study  SBRC Link to Media Release
    30/01/2020 Update - Water Feasibility Study SBRC Link to Media Release
    12/02/2020 South Burnett Investment Logic Workshop DNRME , SBRC, NBRC, Jacobs, & Sunwater N/A
    12/02/2020 Jacobs engagement with SBRC urban water supply planning team Jacobs & SBRC N/A
    12/02/2020 South Burnett Public Information and Registration Evening - Kingaroy RSL Jacobs, SBRC & public Link to Flyer
    13/02/2020 Jacobs Engagement with South Burnett major water users Jacobs, SBRC & major water users N/A
    16/03/2020 South Burnett engagement workshop – Murgon RSL Jacobs, SBRC & public Link to Flyer
    17/03/2020 South Burnett engagement workshop – Blackbutt Town Hall Jacobs, SBRC & public Link to Flyer
    18/03/2020 South Burnett engagement workshop – Kingaroy Town Hall Jacobs, SBRC & public Link to Flyer
    April (TBC) Project Steering Group Review DNRME , SBRC, NBRC, Jacobs, Sunwater N/A

     Please Note: Additional activities are concurrently in progress including Sunwater Blueprint and Paradise Dam Study. Further dates are to be released upon review of progress and confirmation by steering committee.

Boondooma Dam, Water
Irrigation, Farm, Crop

The study is a partnership between South Burnett Regional Council, North Burnett Regional Council,

Dept of Natural Resources, Mines and Energy & SunWater.