Valley

Majority of Round 1 Farm Water Program projects completed

Monday 3 December, 2012
More than 75 per cent of the 148 projects funded through Round 1 of the Farm Water Program have now been completed.

More than 75 per cent of the 148 projects funded through Round 1 of the Farm Water Program have now been completed.

Goulburn Broken Catchment Management Authority (CMA) Chief Executive Officer Chris Norman said 18 giglalitres of water had been saved as result of the works, with half these water savings transferred to either the Victorian or Commonwealth Environmental Water Holder.

The Goulburn Broken CMA delivers the Farm Water Program on behalf of a consortium of Northern Victorian agencies and industry bodies. Round 1 of the program was funded though the Australian Government’s On-Farm Irrigation Efficiency Program ($21 million) and the Victorian Government’s Northern Victorian Irrigation Renewal Project ($16 million).

Funded works included lasering, installation of pipe and risers, installation of reuse systems, automation, channel works, fast flow and scheduling. More than 60 per cent of the projects are on farms that describe dairying as their primary industry type. The remainder of the projects are on beef, grain, horticulture, horse stud or mixed-farming properties.  All Round 1 projects are due to be completed by March 2013.

Mr Norman said most contracts for the 245 projects funded through Round 2 of the Farm Water Program had been signed, with many projects under way.
Funding for Round 2 was received from the Australian Government’s On-Farm Irrigation Efficiency Program ($25 million) and the Victorian On-farm State Priority Project ($43 million). Projects in this round will save about 34 gigalitres of water with half to be used for environmental purposes.

About a dozen Round 2 projects have already been completed with the majority of these finished projects in the Torrumbarry area.

Again, about 60 per cent of Round 2 projects are on dairy farms. In addition to the technologies funded in Round 1, projects funded through the Victorian On-farm State Priority Project included pressurised systems (sprinklers, micro-drip).

Mr Norman said the Farm Water Program had put in a bid for funding from Round 3 of the Australian Government’s On-Farm Irrigation Efficiency Program.

“We have yet to hear if we have been successful in securing the funds but hope to find out shortly,” Mr Norman said.

In the meantime Farm Water Program staff members are checking the eligibility of the 300 projects, registered during the six-week registration of interest call in August and September, against funding criteria (including G-MW connections).

For more information about the Farm Water Program, visit www.gbcma.vic.gov.au or follow us on Facebook and twitter.