The Federal Government is investing $51.2 million in the Eurobodalla Southern Storage project, which includes critical water infrastructure, including a new pumping station.

The project is designed to improve water availability and security on the southern coast of NSW.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development, Michael McCormack, said the 2021-22 Federal Budget saw greater investment from the $3.5 billion National Water Grid Fund flow towards the construction of new and augmented water infrastructure.

“We want to increase water security across Australia and funding projects such as the Eurobodalla Southern Storage is getting on with the job and getting it done,” Mr McCormack said.

“We have committed to build the next generation of water infrastructure to support jobs and contribute to the economic recovery of our regions.

“This project will do exactly that, supporting more than 60 jobs and ten trainee or apprentice positions in the Eurobodalla region during the construction phase alone.”

The Eurobodalla Southern Storage project is located on the Tuross River, approximately 8km west of Bodalla in NSW.

NSW Minister for Water, Property and Housing, Melinda Pavey, said the project will construct a new 3,000ML off-stream water storage facility and a new 26ML per day river pumping station.

“The pumping station would pump water from the Tuross River, in times of high flow, to the storage facility,” Mrs Pavey said.

“This will deliver an additional yield of around 581ML of water availability each year for downstream irrigators and stock watering, improving water security for the Eurobodalla region.

“The additional water availability will be used by the region’s agricultural and primary industries, including to support their production of beef, dairy cattle and oyster growing in three valleys.

“Water kept in the storage facility will also supplement the existing water supply network during periods of drought, bolstering the region’s resilience.”

Senator for New South Wales, Perin Davey, also welcomed the funding.

“Projects like this make sense as we adjust to more rainfall variability due to climate change in the future,” Ms Davey said.

“This project won’t create new water, but will allow us to better manage water by storing water in times of plenty so it is available in times of need.”

Water will be selectively withdrawn from the Tuross River depending on flow conditions, ensuring environmental stress on the Tuross River system will be minimised.

Eurobodalla Mayor, Liz Innes, thanked the Federal Government for its understanding of the community’s needs.

“This funding allows us to build a water storage that will provide drought security and bushfire resilience for residents and businesses for decades to come,” Mayor Innes said. 

“It will also accommodate our growing tourism numbers and predicted population growth.

“Council had the forethought to take the bold step of allocating $3.5 million in 2016 to get started on this project and that strategic work has paid off. 

“A huge thanks to the Australian Government for this funding, the NSW Government for getting on board early with funding and support, and our water and sewer team for showing great vision and commitment to get on with the job.”

The Eurobodalla Southern Storage project is jointly funded, with the Federal Government committing $51.2 million, the New South Wales Government committing $25.6 million and Eurobodalla Shire Council committing $25.6 million.

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