Water Minister Dave Kelly today announced a significant milestone for water security in the State’s agricultural regions, with the completion of the 100th State funded community water supply project since 2018 – a project in Merredin that has delivered improvements to the town’s stormwater network that enables the capture and reuse of stormwater for irrigating the town’s public open spaces.
To acknowledge the milestone, Water Minister Dave Kelly recently visited the project in Merredin as well as two other completed off-farm water supply projects in the State’s Wheatbelt, including a project in the Shire of Wyalkatchem to optimise stormwater capture to the community dam, and a project in the Shire of Toodyay that has boosted storage and access to emergency firefighting water across the area
Many communities in the State’s agricultural regions have experienced significantly reduced rainfall as a result of climate change, which has seriously impacted non-potable water supplies in these areas.
The McGowan Government is committed to helping regional communities secure precious off-farm water supplies and deal with the impacts of climate change.
As part of its ongoing commitment to ensure Western Australian farmers have access to reliable emergency water sources for agricultural livestock drinking water, as well as firefighting and town amenity purposes, the McGowan Government has invested $4 million and has now delivered over 100 community off-farm water supply projects since 2018, including 12 projects in partnership with local governments.
In addition to what has already been delivered, a further 11 community off-farm water supply projects are currently underway.
In November 2021, the McGowan Government announced an additional $10.5 million in funding over the next two years for projects to help secure additional off-farm non-potable water supplies for agricultural communities, including the upgrade and refurbishment of 70 agricultural area dams from the Mid-West through to the Wheatbelt and Great Southern.
As stated by Water Minister Dave Kelly:
“For communities in the State’s dryland agricultural area, the impacts of climate change have resulted in significantly reduced rainfall.
“By refurbishing and increasing the number of off-farm non-potable water sources for regional communities to access for emergency use, the McGowan Government is increasing water security for Western Australian farmers in the face of climate change.
“Investing in off-farm water supply projects at the local level also helps reduce the time and distance farmers have to travel when they need to source emergency water supplies.
“I’m really pleased that we have delivered over 100 community water supply projects since being elected in 2017, with at least another 70 projects to be delivered over the next two years.
“The McGowan Government’s significant investment in water supply projects supports liveable and climate resilient communities in rural Western Australia.”
As stated by Agricultural Region MLC Sandra Carr:
“This is another significant investment in helping to provide greater non-potable water security for our Agricultural Region communities.
“Storm water capture and increased capacity for that capture are important measures that will ensure we are able to provide livestock drinking water, water for local amenities and importantly, water for firefighting.”