More than $100 million in critical Winter Works have been completed across the Goulburn-Murray Irrigation District (GMID), marking another key milestone in the Connections Project, Victoria’s largest water modernisation project.

The Connections Project is an initiative between the Australian Government and Goulburn Murray Water to deliver a series of water-saving pipeline projects to enhance the irrigation in the GMID and generate 429GL in water savings each year.

Key achievements in the 2017 Winter Works program include:

  • Upgrading more than 33km of irrigation channel to fix leaks, seepage and generate water savings
  • Installing more than 35km of pipeline for greater efficiency, improved water connections
  • Undertaking works on more than 500 outlets across the irrigation district
  • Installing more than 250 channel automation sites

While more work needs to be done on some outstanding cases, the Connections Project is on-track for completion in 2020 – with more than 300 cases between landholders resolved since October 2016, allowing more works to be completed.

As part of the Winter Works program, there were more than 100 different works and upgrades completed, more than 500 people employed and more than 250,000 hours of work completed.

A new landowner engagement process was used as part of the works and was designed to simplify processes and to provide more certainty for landowners about the timing of works.

Victorian Minister for water, Lisa Neville, said the works will deliver an efficient irrigation system that will support irrigators in regional Victoria in the future.

“The Connections Project is delivering an improved water supply to our agricultural communities, modernising the irrigation district and providing a huge boost to local economies,” Ms Neville said.

Connections Project Control Group Chair, Peter McManamon, said the projects were a boost for irrigators.

“We’re upgrading the delivery network for improved water efficiency for irrigators and to ensure they are getting the infrastructure they need to maximise agricultural production,” Mr McManamon said. 

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