Senate debates

Thursday, 17 October 2019

Questions without Notice

Water Infrastructure

2:54 pm

Photo of Matthew CanavanMatthew Canavan (Queensland, Liberal National Party, Minister for Resources and Northern Australia) Share this | Hansard source

I can well understand why this chamber is so excited about dams. Everybody loves dams. People are even more excited this week because, on the weekend, the government—the Prime Minister and the Deputy Prime Minister—announced additional funding, additional investment, for more dams in Australia. They announced $567 million of more funding for dams in New South Wales. We can all see the terrible drought that's occurring in regional New South Wales right now and these investments give farmers hope for the future that we will have water. We will have investment. We will have an expanded agricultural sector that the Minister for Agriculture is working so hard to provide. We will be investing in upgrading the Wyangala Dam—a 10-metre rise on the Wyangala Dam. We will be investing in the Dungowan Dam near Tamworth as well.

It's such a shame that in New South Wales we have a government that are working with the federal government to build this infrastructure that people want in regional communities, while in Queensland we have a government with just as many opportunities—in fact, perhaps more opportunities to grow and develop their water resources—that are reducing the size of dams in Queensland. They're going to let over 100,000 megalitres go from the Paradise Dam and reduce that size of the dam, shrinking opportunities for farmers in the future. On the Rookwood Weir they're complaining that they can't afford it anymore and now they're cutting the size of the Rookwood Weir as well, which will cut off future opportunities for farmers in Central Queensland. We'll stand for dams, this government, because we believe in the future of farming in this nation.


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