Government splurges $37m on Central West water pipelines and opts for Cranky Dam over Needles Gap

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The New South Wales Government will spend millions on improving water security throughout the Central West and has also announced it's preferred spot for a proposed dam.

The Water Minister Kevin Humphries was in Orange today and announced $37 million would be spent on two pipeline projects to lock in the region's water supply.

The Government would provide $22m towards a proposal for potable water supply from Orange to Blayney and Carcoar dams.

Another $16m will be spent on a potable water supply pipeline from Orange to Molong Dam which will then be extended to Cumnock and Yeoval.

The member for Orange, Andrew Gee, is more than pleased to see the money spent in the Central West.

"In this latest round of water security for regions, $80m is being doled out by the New South Wales Government and almost half of that is going to the Central West," he said.

"So it's very exciting news.

"Exciting times for our water security and water management."

Mr Humphries said the money would go towards improving the overall secure water yield.

He said it would also connect water treatment plants and raw water sources to "strengthen drought resistance for a large area of the Central West".

The State Government has also identified Cranky Rock near Canowindra on the Belubula River as its preferred site for a new dam in the Central West.

The decision will be a blow for the Federal Member for Calare, John Cobb, who has been pushing for a dam to be built at Needles Gap.

The Water Minister, Kevin Humphries, said the Cranky Dam option avoided engineering difficulties and environmental challenges associatied with the Needles Gap dam proposal.

He said the Cranky Rock proposal would have widespread ramifications for the region.

"A Cranky Rock water supply would allow Carcoar Dam to be networked into Central Tablelands Water," Mr Humphries said.

"Allowing it to extend the network and provide back-up drought supplies and secure water to a number of towns beyond the current network."

Mr Gee said about $4m would be spent over the next year and a half on a feasibility study and that the dam was not a certainty.

"It's not locked in until all the feasibility is completed," he said.

"But what it says is this is the site which if we're going to be build a dam we'd prefer to have it on."

He said there would be widespread consultation with the community about the proposed dam.

The State Government announced seven months ago its plan to construct the first dam in western New South Wales in almost 30 years.

  • published this page in News 2015-02-08 19:14:50 +1100

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