Mike Knott

Rural industry bodies to reap $8m in efficient water grants

QUEENSLAND'S peak industry bodies will share in almost $8 million worth of State Government grants to promote efficient water use in regional areas.

The organisations include Growcom, Canegrowers, Nursery and Garden Industry Queensland, Queensland Turf Producers Association, Flower Association of Queensland and Queensland Dairyfarmers' Organisation.

Minister for Natural Resources and Mines Andrew Cripps said today the funding was part of the Rural Water Use Efficiency for Irrigation Futures program.

"This injection of funds will flow to landowners through services from industry bodies, which will benefit irrigators through the wider use of new and more efficient technologies," he said.

"Grants will be provided to number of peak industry groups to assist irrigators across Queensland to improve on-farm water management.

"We are taking a targeted approach, such as providing funding to areas where water allocations have been reduced or are under stressed, where there are groundwater issues, or areas of concern to industry statewide."

Mr Cripps said the rural water use efficiency program would focus on sustainability measures in line with the government's commitment to agriculture.

"Increased competition for water, periodic drought conditions and rising energy costs has impacted the bottom line for irrigators," he said.

"The government is committed to helping the sector minimise costs, improve productivity and use resources more responsibly."

Mr Cripps said the program will also support the irrigated agriculture industry in other important producing regions such as the Lockyer Valley, Central Highlands, Mackay, Burnett, Central and South West areas

Further information about the Rural Water Use Efficiency for Irrigation Futures program is available online at www.dnrm.qld.gov.au/water/access/rural-water-use-efficiency