25 October 2022
Mackay Conservation Group has welcomed the federal government’s reversal of a previous commitment to provide $483 million of taxpayer’s funds to subsidise construction of Urannah Dam in tonight’s budget.
Earlier this month Mackay Conservation Group (MCG) called on the federal government to withdraw the funding on environmental and economic grounds.
“This project has the potential to damage our region’s precious waterways, the Great Barrier Reef and wildlife while returning as little as 26 cents in economic benefits for every dollar it costs,” said Mackay Conservation Group dams campaigner, Imogen Lindenberg.
“This project does not stack up economically or environmentally. Far from being a project that benefits the community, it will only benefit the private proponents themselves and the coal industry.”
Mackay Conservation Group says the dam and downstream irrigation area will impact thirty threatened species, with the potential to destroy a major population of the iconic Irwin’s Turtle.
The Urannah Dam business case suggests that up to 60,900ML could be supplied to coal mines from the dam which has led to concerns being raised that the dam would become a stranded asset.
“The water from the Urannah Dam will be used to wash coal but the industry in our region has a limited lifespan. Without demand from coal, this dam will become a stranded asset in decades to come, costing taxpayers even more money,” Ms Lindenberg said.
MCG welcomes this move by the Federal Government to stop funding this private project, which is yet to gain approval at a state or federal level.
For more information, or for interviews please contact:
Mackay Conservation Group
Mobile: 0477 997 392
Office: (07) 4953 0808