October 4, 2019
Five Federal and State LNP MPs have kicked off a social media campaign – “What’s your Dam Plan?” – to press the State Government over the future of Paradise Dam.
Federal Member for Flynn Ken O’Dowd, State Member for Callide Colin Boyce, Federal Member for Hinkler Keith Pitt, State Member for Burnett Stephen Bennett and State Member for Bundaberg David Batt have banded together to demand answers about current and future water security in the region.
“While safety should always come first, the Queensland State Labor Government needs to give growers in this region some surety that they will either reinstate the dam to its full capacity or start other water projects in the region,” Mr Pitt said.
“How long will the repairs take? Is the planned 5m reduction on the spillway a temporary measure or is there no intention of reinstating it?
“If they can’t or won’t reinstate it, how is the State Government going to provide 85,000 ML of water to growers and producers in this region each year, for the next 50 years?”
Mr Bennett said the State Government was getting more and more secretive about the dam.
“There’s still no real technical data for us to see,” he said.
“No engineering reports have been produced to give us confidence that this is the real reason behind what is happening. Quite frankly it is unbelievable that the newest dam in Queensland is now not fit for purpose.
“We need answers and we need them now.”
Mr O’Dowd said the last thing the State Government should be doing during a drought was reducing a dam’s storage capacity.
“No matter if it is irrigators on the Boyne, Burnett, Barambah or Coalstoun Lakes and Wallaville, they need water security. We need water infrastructure and we needed it six years ago.”
Mr Batt said many critical questions about Paradise Dam remained unanswered.
“What went wrong in the dam’s construction? What was in the report that required immediate water release? Why haven’t the reports been made public? What does this mean for Bundaberg in the next flood? These are the questions residents are asking,” he said.
“This debacle affects the lives of tens of thousands of people. It’s a failure Queenslanders will never forget.”