THE organisation driving the construction of the Emu Swamp Dam and its distribution network at Stanthorpe has welcomed an additional $126.5 million in funding as part of this week's federal budget.
Granite Belt Irrigation Project chief executive officer Lloyd Taylor said the 12,000 megalitre dam at Emu Swamp located south west of Stanthorpe and 126km of pipeline would deliver water to almost 50 agribusiness and community customers.
Mr Taylor said the scale and design of the project would also bring wide-reaching social and economic benefits to the region, and state and national economies.
"This project will not only increase water security to the region, it will also create a significant number of jobs during construction, as well as long-term full-time positions in agriculture and supporting businesses, to help substantially grow the productivity of southern Queensland," Mr Taylor said.
"We wholeheartedly commend the Australian Government for its recognition of the importance of Emu Swamp Dam and making this further $126.5 million investment in addition to the $47 million already committed."
GBIP is also funded by $23.4m from local irrigators, the highest proportion of community investment in water infrastructure in Queensland's history, and a conditional commitment of $13.6m from the Queensland Government.
Mr Taylor thanked Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce, Agriculture Minister David Littleproud and former Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack for their work in advocating the project.
"It is important to also thank the Palaszczuk government, Queensland Minister for Regional Development and Manufacturing Glenn Butcher, Member for Southern Downs James Lister and local irrigators for the valued support of Emu Swamp Dam they have shown," Mr Taylor said.
"We are looking forward to continuing to work with all stakeholders and the Granite Belt community to deliver a water asset that will be truly transformational."
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