Work is underway for the second stage of the South West Loddon Pipeline Project in northwest Victoria.
Victorian Minister for Water Lisa Neville announced the commencement of construction of stage two, following final environmental and cultural heritage approvals.
The government is putting $40 million towards the $80.6 million project, which will secure supply to communities, households and farmers in the South West Loddon region.
“This project will provide water security for farmers and the agriculture sector – which is good for the wellbeing of agriculture communities, for jobs, and for liveability,” said Ms Neville.
“The project will deliver better overall management of water resources by connecting the Wimmera–Glenelg system to the west with the larger Goulburn system in north central Victoria.”
Sections of pipe have been delivered to site in areas north of Inglewood, in preparation for commencement of construction, which will see the 110 km of pipeline installed as part of stage one increased to a total of approximately 1,300 km.
Stage two of the project will provide water to the rural communities of Skinners Flat, Fiery Creek, Arnold, Bridgewater, East Gowar, Wedderburn South and Kurting.
The new pipeline extends the existing Wimmera-Mallee stock and domestic pipeline, covering a greater area to provide a more secure rural water supply to sustain a viable regional economy.
The project will service 260 rural farming enterprises and 370 lifestyle properties over an area of 2,900 square kilometres with a reticulated water supply.
The project is being delivered in partnership with the state government, Loddon Shire Council, Coliban Water, Goulburn-Murray Water and the Commonwealth.
Stage one of the project was delivered and officially opened by the Minister in October last year.
The project is expected to be completed by mid-2019.