The state government will invest $78.2 million in regional water provision and natural resource management (NRM), the water minister and regional development and lands minister announced today.
The four-year suite of projects, funded by the Royalties for Regions program, will be delivered to the departments of regional development and lands; water; and agriculture and food.
Regional development and lands minister Brendan Grylls said the water and NRM initiatives would drive strategic regional development and future investment by capitalising on water availability to support agriculture, industry, mining, tourism and urban centres.
“This Royalties for Regions-funded initiative will contribute to the sustainability and prosperity of regional communities,” he said.
“The projects will develop regional water resources, while advancing water assessments, water re-use and water efficiency and assisting with flood mitigation in and near Carnarvon.”
Water Minister Bill Marmion said the Department of Water would lead work on water availability, planning and investigation.
“Water is vitally important for economic growth and development in Western Australia,” Mr Marmion said.
“WA is the second-driest State in the driest continent of the world
“Improved water availability knowledge will allow us to manage our resources more effectively and provide more security to water users to encourage investment in existing and future regional developments.”
Mr Grylls said the project would identify and help develop irrigation precincts to underpin future economic development opportunities.
“A key focus will be developing land and water infrastructure in the Carnarvon Irrigation Area and the Gascoyne River Catchment to facilitate the sustainable expansion of the horticulture precinct,” he said.
Assessments of priority irrigation precincts in the Kimberley will also be a key component of the project.
“These commitments will be progressed alongside efforts to support water efficiency and conservation initiatives in current industry operations - particularly horticulture,” Mr Grylls said.