Fitzroy Gap Dam not a priority – Senator Matt Canavan

THE proposed Fitzroy Gap Dam is not the priority for Central Queensland, according to Senator Matt Canavan.

"Dreaming is nice but doing is better," Sen Canavan said.

"It is great to see people getting behind projects in Central Queensland but the proposed Fitzroy Gap Dam would not be built for decades, if at all. I want to see a project that can be completed within a decade.

"Central Queensland needs jobs and investment soon, given the downturn in the mining sector.

"There are worthwhile projects right now, like Connors River Dam and Nathan Dam that have customers, environmental approvals and State Government backing.

"There are some extremely capable people that work on water projects in State Government. Some of these people are refugees from the days where public works departments actually built dams.

"The only prudent path is to heed their advice when we are considering spending billions of taxpayers' dollars on a major project.

"Fitzroy Gap would inundate huge amounts of productive farming country.

"No discussions have even started with affected landowners and farmers. In contrast, the State Government has already bought the land for the Connors River Dam.


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"All dams have an environmental impact and their potential impact must be carefully assessed. Connors River Dam has already achieved State and Federal environmental approval, and Nathan Dam has an environmental impact statement out for consultation now.

"With a State election coming up, there are funds on the table for Government investment thanks to the leasing of State assets.

Rockhampton businessman Dominic Doblo started the push for the gap dam proposal and says the dams proposed by Senator Canavan won't suffice.

Mr Doblo said the trouble with the Connors Dam is that the water will be used for the mining sector, and the Nathan Dam is too far west to pick up reliable rainfall.

"Just look at Emerald now, Fairbairn Dam is at 35%, they're in drought," Mr Doblo said.

If not the Fitzroy Gap Dam, something needed to start happening for Rockhampton.

"What is the major bit of infrastructure for Rocky, what is the billion dollar (idea) for the city?."

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