Three Federal Government MPs will make an aerial inspection of dam sites in Central Queensland next week and talk to local communities as part of a campaign backing major infrastructure projects in the region.
Senator Matt Canavan, Member for Capricornia Michelle Landry and Member for Flynn Ken O’Dowd will take a report on CQ infrastructure projects to federal Treasurer Joe Hockey and Deputy Prime Minister Warren Truss later this month.
“We will urge them to give strong consideration to these projects and to respond to what is a big downturn in mining jobs in Central Queensland,” Senator Canavan said in a speech to the Senate this week. “While it is a little bit tough there at the moment, the future is bright if we have the vision and the guts, and if we stand up to those that like to say ‘No’ all the time. There is a lot to do in Central Queensland.”
Senator Canavan said they would be flying over dam sites between Rockhampton, Moranbah and Emerald, and talking to local communities about opportunities in the region.
“We will be looking at all those projects as a Central Queensland LNP team. We will take the ideas that we get from our consultations with the Queensland Government and from our direct visits to the communities down to Canberra in the next parliamentary sitting period with a report to Joe Hockey and Warren Truss.
“This is a follow-up to a meeting that was held this week between the Treasurer, the Deputy PM and CQ MPs. Everyone acknowledges urgent action is needed to boost the economy in Central Queensland and we will be taking a firsthand look at potential infrastructure projects, particularly dams.
“I will be meeting with senior executives from SunWater, the Queensland Government water infrastructure provider, in Brisbane on Tuesday, and we will have someone from SunWater on board as we fly over CQ dam sites on Thursday to see for ourselves the potential that is there.”
Senator Canavan said there is “great optimism and positivity for Central Queensland”.
“Despite the fact that the coal industry is struggling right now, there are great opportunities in Central Queensland. There are new mines set to open. The Carmichael mine received Federal Government approval a few months ago and it is going to provide 10,000 jobs alone in the Galilee Basin, west of Mackay. It is a great opportunity. It is going to be one of the biggest areas for coal mining. It is probably the best area in the world for new coal mines. It is a great thing for Queensland to have.”
He said projects like the Connors River Dam could provide water to the Galilee Basin, the Carmichael mine projects and others, and they would also inspect other dams or sites, including Rookwood, Eden Bann, Fairbairn and Theresa Creek.