The proposed $2.9 billion Urannah Dam in Central Queensland has been declared a coordinated project, with the potential to create up to 1200 jobs during construction.
The State Government said the project would now go through an impact assessment process to determine any significant environmental, social, cultural and economic impacts it may have on the region.
The proposal includes a new dam on the Broken River about 64km south-east of Collinsville with capacity of up to 1.5 million megalitres as well as a water pipeline network and an irrigated precinct for high value agriculture.
It would also feature a pumped hydro-electricity power scheme in the upper Broken River Valley, north west of Mackay.
The project is being led by Bowen River Utilities in collaboration with the Bowen Collinsville Enterprise.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the Urannah Dam had has the potential to create up to 1200 full-time equivalent jobs during construction and 675 full-time jobs once operations had commenced.
“Jobs and water security are two of the most important things for Queensland right now,” she said.
“Progressing projects like this will help to secure our state’s future.
“My government is committed to supporting Queensland’s economy by supporting our key regional sectors, including agriculture.
“If we’re backing industry and helping facilitate big projects, we’re putting more Queenslanders into jobs.”
Member for Mackay and Assistant Minister for State Development Julieanne Gilbert said the proponent would now begin preparing a comprehensive environmental impact statement (EIS).
“This project potentially means water security and jobs for our part of Queensland,” Ms Gilbert said.
“The ongoing rigorous assessment will include extensive community consultation, so locals can help shape the requirements of the EIS.”