Jacobs Group is carrying out a two-part study into the feasibility of constructing the proposed Cloncurry River Dam.
Regional development group MITEZ (Mount Isa to Townsville Economic Zone) appointed Jacobs to look into the best location and management regime for new water storage on the river to support agricultural development and water security for mining, industry and urban water users.
The study is supported by funding from the Australian Government’s National Water Infrastructure Development Fund, an initiative of the Northern Australia and Agricultural Competitiveness white papers.
MITEZ president David Glasson said Jacobs brought extensive experience in the delivery of similar studies for water storage facilities across Queensland and nationally.
“Jacobs has been involved in economic studies for projects such as Nullinga, Nathan and Connors River Dams, as well as Paradise Dam, Wyaralong Dam, and Hinze Dam Stage III upgrade,” Mr Glasson said.
Under Queensland Government guidelines, Jacobs will deliver a preliminary business case by November 2017 and a detailed business case by December 2018.
Cloncurry Shire Mayor Greg Campbell said he was excited about the study kicking off.
“We know how important water is to development and industry growth,” he said.
“One of the main drivers for a major storage on the Cloncurry River is to provide sufficient, affordable water to develop an irrigated agriculture precinct, additional water for industry and water security for our communities, which is essential if we are to further develop the north.
“And if the completed feasibility study indicates a dam on the Cloncurry River is viable, this will enable proponents to apply to the Commonwealth’s Water Infrastructure Fund for a contribution towards construction of the dam.”
Jacobs project manager Angus MacDonald said the team would engage with key stakeholders around Cloncurry, take a forward-looking approach to the demand assessment and consider a diversity of agricultural production opportunities.