The $352 million Rookwood Weir project in Central Queensland has been confirmed, with Central Queensland MPs, Glenn Butcher, Barry O’Rourke and Brittany Lauga, welcoming SunWater as proponent for the project.

“The Palaszczuk Government allocated $66 million in the 2018-19 Queensland Budget to progress this much-needed infrastructure,’’ Member for Gladstone, Glenn Butcher, said.

“Once constructed, Rookwood Weir will have the ability to supply 76,000ML per annum of water for the region – a resource that will underpin agricultural growth and supply industrial and urban water throughout Gladstone and the Capricorn Coast.’’

Member for Rockhampton, Barry O’Rourke, said the weir, to be built on the Fitzroy River 60km south-west of Rockhampton, would provide water certainty for Central Queensland.

“SunWater is well placed to develop and operate Rookwood Weir. The infrastructure will be integrated into their existing local network which includes Eden Bann Weir and Stanwell Pipeline.”

Member for Keppel, Brittany Lauga, said the go-ahead on Rookwood was proof of the Palaszczuk Government’s commitment to infrastructure in regional Queensland.

“This Government has been determined to get on with the job, despite the federal obstacles, and the appointment of SunWater is a crucial step.’’

Chief Executive Officer, Nicole Hollows, said SunWater had worked with Gladstone Area Water Board (GAWB) during the preliminary phases of the project to identify demand for water in Central Queensland and the drivers for economic growth.

“Our research tells us there are primary producers in the region with an appetite for growing their business, diversifying into new crops or using their land differently,” Ms Hollows said.

“Irrigated water from Rookwood Weir would empower many of them to do this in the future.’’

Queensland Energy Minister, Dr Anthony Lynham, said it had taken a lot of hard work to get to this point and wanted to acknowledge the important role of all parties involved, including GAWB’s committed efforts during the preliminary phases of the project and SunWater.

Rookwood Weir will provide a combined 42,000ML of water per annum for agricultural and commercial use.

Approximately 4000ML per annum of high priority water will be used to supplement urban supplies along the Capricorn Coast.

GAWB will also have access to approximately 30,000ML per annum of high priority water to supply industrial and urban users in Gladstone.

Lauren ‘LJ’ Butler is the Assistant Editor of Utility magazine and has been part of the team at Monkey Media since 2018.

After completing a Bachelor of Media, Communications and Professional Writing at the University of Wollongong in 2014, and prior to writing about the utility sector, LJ worked as a Journalist and Sub Editor across the horticulture, hardware, power equipment, construction and accommodation industries with publishers such as Glenvale Publications, Multimedia Publishing and Bean Media Group.

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