A detailed feasibility study of a proposed new, water storage for the Cloncurry and Mount Isa region will soon commence after the Queensland Government advanced funds for the first phase of the project to regional development group, MITEZ who last year made a successful application to the Australian Government’s National Water Infrastructure Development Fund.

Heading the project is the Cloncurry Dam Project Management Committee that consists of members of the MITEZ executive, Cloncurry Mayor, Cr Greg Campbell and project manager Dr Romy Greiner who was appointed by the committee to coordinate the project and ensure the required deliverables are achieved.

Dr Greiner is an adjunct professor at James Cook University and a natural resource economist with a strong international scientific reputation. Her experience in water management includes serving as chair of the Northern Territory Water Resources Review Committee. She has conducted applied benefit-cost analysis and agricultural economic investigations.

MITEZ President, Mr David Glasson said a three person Technical Advisory Panel had been assembled to provide expert advice to the project team such as reviewing and providing feedback on the consultant’s reports to ensure the quality of work expected.

Mr Glasson said they had advertised for expressions of interest from experienced consultants who may be engaged to carry out the various elements of the feasibility study and further information is available on the MITEZ web-site.

Cr Campbell said the study will assess the proposal against a variety of technical, environmental and economic criteria to determine whether or not the dam is viable.

“We know how important water is to development and industry growth and if the completed feasibility study indicates a dam on the Cloncurry River is viable, this will enable proponents to apply to the Commonwealth’s water infrastructure fund for a major contribution towards construction the dam” said Cr Campbell.

“One of the main drivers for a major storage on the Cloncurry River is to provide sufficient, affordable water to develop an irrigated agriculture precinct, additional water for industry and water security for our communities which is essential if we are to further develop the north” he said.

In March 2016 the NW Queensland Water Supply Strategy Investigation was completed and its final report identified a major water storage upstream along the Cloncurry River would provide the best option for the Cloncurry and Mount Isa region. The detailed feasibility study soon to commence is expected to provide far greater analysis to confirm the viability and benefits of the proposal.