The construction of the Connors River Dam and Pipeline Project recently received Federal Government approval of the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). The go-ahead marks a significant milestone for SunWater and Central Queensland, as the project has been hailed as a solution to the area’s water supply needs.

Once completed, the $1.2 billion project will see the construction of a 373,662 megalitre capacity dam, along with a 133 km-long pipeline spanning the dam to Moranbah.

“The EIS approval is subject to the strict conditions outlined in reports created under the bilateral agreement between the State and Federal Governments,” said SunWater Chief Executive Peter Boettcher. “These conditions include detailed ongoing monitoring and reporting requirements to mitigate the environmental, economic and social impacts associated with the project, which should provide confidence to the community that SunWater will meet the high standards required during construction and operation.”

The two-year-long EIS process reviewed an array of documents from SunWater, submissions from the community, and other materials. Once completed, the project will see water delivered safely and securely to the Bowen Basin and surrounding regions.

Many have welcomed the Commonwealth’s approval of the EIS, including Jeff Seeney, Deputy Premier and Minister for State Development, Infrastructure and Planning. “This important project will underpin the water supply needs for the development of this resource industry corridor, and the towns that support it,” said the Minister of the project, which will see approximately 49,500 ML of water per annum transported via pipeline from the dam as far as Moranbah, and the servicing of coal mines and associated communities in central Queensland. Additionally, water may also be purchased for irrigation.

It is believed that construction of the project could start later this year, and see over 620 jobs created before the first water is delivered in 2016. “It would be an economic shot in the arm to the region and play a role in attracting more people to live in the region,” said Seeney, “and it will help facilitate the delivery of reliable water supplies to the Bowen and Galilee coal basins, as well as the townships of Nebo, Moranbah and Alpha.”

Home Automation

Call it ‘domotics,’ and you are likely to receive a blank stare, but refer to it as ‘smart home’ or ‘home automation,’ and you will get a nod of acknowledgement. For the past few years, consumers have heard the word ‘smart’ attached to countless products and services, from food and drink to snacks like popcorn and mobile phones, which no one seems to refer to as a ‘cellphone’ anymore. Yet what, exactly, constitutes ‘smart’?

January 18, 2021, 8:39 PM AEDT