Green light for Northern Adelaide Irrigation Scheme

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The State Government has welcomed the Federal Government’s funding announcement to support a $155.6 million initiative which will create an estimated 3700 jobs and add more than $500 million a year to the State’s economy.

Funding has been secured through the National Water Infrastructure Development Fund (NWIDF) for the Northern Adelaide Irrigation Scheme (NAIS), which adds to $110 million committed by the State Government earlier this year.

The scheme will deliver an additional 12 gigalitres (GL) a year of high quality recycled water from the Bolivar Wastewater Treatment Plant. This is in an increase in capacity of 60 per cent – suitable for commercial food crops – to help expand the State’s irrigated primary production industry in the Northern Adelaide Plains north of the Gawler River.

The new infrastructure will be built with the ability to increase capacity to 20 GL a year, as demand and access to overseas markets grow.

An independent economic assessment has identified the extra 12 GL of recycled water a year would create 3700 jobs in the region and add $578 million a year to the state’s economy – growing to 6,000 jobs and $1.1 billion a year when at the full 20 GL capacity.

Construction is expected to start in early 2018 with the intention of recycled water flowing to irrigators from 2019.