Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk.
Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk. DAN PELED

Water storage concerns to be discussed when premier visits

WATER storage solutions will be on the agenda when Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk visits the Fraser Coast next week.

Governing from Wide Bay, part of the Premier's Governing from the Regions initiative, will start from September 10 and will bring the government to Hervey Bay, Maryborough and Bundaberg.

MSF Sugar yesterday released a statement outlining its concerns regarding water storage in the region.

There are 15,000 hectares of land currently under cane on the Fraser Coast, but a large part of that land was affected by the drought at the beginning of the year.

About 65% of the land had access to the Sun-Water-operated Lower Mary Irrigation Scheme and the Fraser Coast Regional Council-operated Effluent Re-Use Scheme.

The remaining land relies on rainfall.

Due to limited storage capacity, the scheme has run out of water twice in four years for significant periods during crucial cane growing times.

This meant growers could not access their usable water allocations to irrigate their cane in a critical stage of the 2017 growing season.

Sunwater has proposed the Glendorf Off-Stream Storage, which has a 6000 mega litre storage capacity and would be adjacent to the Mary River along the ponded area of Mary River Barrage.

That would be a 60% increase in usable water storage in the region.

Maryborough MP Bruce Saunders said he was 100% behind the plan put forward by Sunwater and MSF Sugar.

He said it would be on the agenda next week during the Premier's visit to the Fraser Coast.

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