Frecklington says fix, don't tear down Paradise Dam

Fix, don't tear down Paradise Dam says Frecklington

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BUNDABERG: LNP Opposition Leader Deb Frecklington says the compromised Paradise Dam wall can be fixed for a quarter of the cost.

BUNDABERG: LNP Opposition Leader Deb Frecklington says the compromised Paradise Dam wall can be fixed for a quarter of the cost.

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LNP Leader Deb Frecklington says the compromised Paradise Dam wall can be fixed for a quarter of the cost.

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LNP Leader Deb Frecklington has called for an immediate halt to work on Paradise Dam, saying the compromised water storage can be fixed for a quarter of the cost.

"It makes no sense for the Labor government to spend a $100 million to lower the Paradise Dam wall when we have independent experts saying it can be fixed for $25m," Ms Frecklington said.

"Independent expert Dr Paul Rizzo's report makes it clear that Paradise Dam can be fixed at a reasonable cost and that the dam is highly unlikely to experience failure.

"Labor must stop pulling down this dam today until all options to fix Paradise Dam are fully explored."

However, Natural Resource Minister Anthony Lynham says the LNP has the maths wrong, saying the $25 million being touted by Ms Frecklington was a bogus figure.

BURNETT RIVER: The 300,000 megalitre Paradise Dam is being reduced by 5m after safety concerns were raised about the dam wall's integrity.

BURNETT RIVER: The 300,000 megalitre Paradise Dam is being reduced by 5m after safety concerns were raised about the dam wall's integrity.

"Our priorities for Paradise Dam as the same as they are for COVID-19: protect lives first, and then protect businesses and jobs," Dr Lynham said.

"Sunwater is lowering the dam wall by 5m now to protect lives and property, and after that we will fix the dam - to protect farm businesses and jobs."

Dr Lynham said Building Queensland was investigating three options once the spillway was reduced in height, including maintaining the dam at that reduced height, increasing the level of the spillway to a level to be advised, or lowering the spillway further, with extra alternative water supply options as required.

"Testing and investigations will continue this year, including: geotechnical investigations of the dam's foundations, anchoring trials, and additional testing of the roller compacted concrete," Dr Lynham said.

"Once government has all the expert advice, we will make a fully-informed call on how to fix this dam for the people of Bundaberg and the Burnett region."

The 300,000 megalitre Paradise Dam is being reduced by 5m after safety concerns were raised about the dam wall's integrity. A 5m reduction will reduce the capacity of the dam by 42 per cent.

Ms Frecklington said jobs and economic survival were on the line.

"We know that water creates jobs," she said.

"Jobs and job security are needed now more than ever - this is about securing the economic future of this region and ensuring we can be more self-reliant with our food supply."

Ms Frecklington said the LNP would work with experts including Dr Paul Rizzo to fix Paradise Dam, including directing Sunwater to work with Dr Rizzo on the design of stabiliers, recognising work carried out on Bagell Dam in Missouri, the largest man-made dam in the US. More upstream water storage options would be also investigated, she said.

"The only way to deliver more water security are more dams," Ms Frecklington said. "It's not a question of one project over another."

Queensland goes to the polls on October 31.

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