Water storage infrastructure $33M boost for McLaren Vale wine region

More than half a billion dollars will be invested in delivering new water infrastructure projects for regional communities through the Federal Government’s National Water Infrastructure Development Fund.The McLaren Vale wine industry in South Australia is set for a $33 million water infrastructure boost.

The construction contracts for a $7.3 million water storage project are expected to be awarded by the end of October.

The project will include the construction of a 600 megalitre water storage facility to redirect recycled wastewater from the Christies Beach Wastewater treatment plant to McLaren Vale irrigators.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack today announced the McLaren Vale Community Sustainability Company would develop the project, part of which has been funded under the National Water Infrastructure Development Fund.

“This project is anticipated to result in an additional $5.5 million in grape production for McLaren Vale annually, leading to an estimated $33 million yearly increase in wine production, 48 full-time on-farm jobs and 120 winery jobs,” he said.

South Australian Minister for Primary Industries and Regional Development Tim Whetstone said the project to redirect recycled water for the betterment of the wine grape industry was significant.

“This project will have enormous benefit for not only the McLaren Vale wine region but also the $2.15 billion South Australian sector as a whole, creating on-farm and winery jobs,” Mr. Whetstone said.

The Willunga Basin Water Company is contributing $4.8 million alongside the Federal Government’s $2.5 million commitment.

Willunga Basin Water Company’s Craig Heidenreich said the project is a win-win for the local producers and the environment.

“Recycled waste water no longer ends up in the ocean damaging marine life but helps ease the pressure on the local groundwater system,” Mr. Heidenreich said.

Construction is expected to be complete with the project on-line by June 2020.

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