QUEENSLAND Agriculture Minister Leanne Donaldson has announced the opening of the third and final round of financial assistance for broadacre irrigators in the Queensland section of the Murray-Darling Basin.
The funding is available for projects aimed at achieving a 10 per cent lift in water productivity by adopting new water use efficiency technologies.
Primarily focussed on the communities in the Condamine-Balonne and Border Rivers districts, the areas that will benefit most from the funding are the Darling Downs, St George, Dirranbandi, Texas, Inglewood, Goondiwindi and Mungindi.
The Minister said eligible irrigators had until the end of September to apply for the funding through the Murray-Darling Basin Regional Economic Diversification program designed to fund projects to stimulate economic activity in areas affected by water reductions under the Murray-Darling Basin Plan.
Qld Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (QDAF) principal extension officer, Graham Harris, said irrigators were able to download the Round 3 Grant Funding Guidelines and Expression of Interest form from www.moreprofitperdrop.com.au
Mr Harris said grant funding totalling $644,000 had been provided to irrigators through the first two rounds of funding.
“Across the two rounds we received and approved applications from a wide range of irrigators located in Dirranbandi, St George, Chinchilla, Talwood, Goondiwindi, Dalby, Cecil Plains, Inglewood and Stanthorpe,” he said.
“Using the WaterTrack Divider, a cotton industry benchmarking tool developed by Aquatech Consulting, we have been working closely with participating irrigators to benchmark their on-farm water productivity.
“With the funding provided to date, approved irrigators have been able to purchase and be reimbursed for a range of pre-approved items such as storage and flow meters, soil moisture probes, professional evaluation and storage assessment services.”
The Australian Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development has provided QDAF with funding to run the project as part of the MDBREDP, with in-kind support from Queensland Government agencies.
“As a result of this three-year project, we expect to see increased economic activity and more profitable and resilient irrigation enterprises within the region,” Mr Harris said.
Interested irrigators requiring additional information on the funding round are encouraged to contact Graham Harris or Grant Cutler on [email protected] or 13 25 23.
Further details and to download documentation visit www.moreprofitperdrop.com.au