By Jeremy Sollars
Emergency water restrictions for the region will come into effect from this Thursday 19 December as the Southern Downs Regional Council begins what is says is “the largest water carting project ever to be undertaken by a local government in Australia’s history”.
The new water use target as of this Thursday will be 80 litres per person per day – down from 100 – and the council says this will apply “to all residents across the Southern Downs and Granite Belt, including rural residents who purchase water from Council”.
Mayor Tracy Dobie has “assured the community that Council is ready to deliver and residents will not run out of water”.
“The infrastructure is in place, a trial run has been conducted and now we are ready to commence the water carting,” Cr Dobie said.
“We know the water predicament has caused concern in the community and we are determined to keep drinking water supplied through taps and water stands.
“Residents across our region are emotionally, physically and financially fatigued by this lack of rain, but we are all in this together.”
Cr Dobie said trucks will cart water daily from Connolly Dam to Storm King Dam water tanks with the water to be blended with the remaining water in Storm King Dam.
“Blending of water will occur until late December/early January until Storm King Dam water is no longer able to be used,” the mayor said.
“The water carting project is fully funded by the State Government and once in full operation will be at a cost of $800,000 per month.
“It is important for residents to remain vigilant in their water use as all use impacts on the amount of water to be trucked.
“There are resources available to residents to assist them manage water now, such as the showerhead exchange program and into the future with the water tank rebate.
“Residents are encouraged to visit www.sdrc.qld.gov.au for up to date information on water supply and storage. Information on Council’s website is updated each Monday.
“Council’s website site also includes a water usage calculator. Ideally residents should read their meter at the same time each week to calculate and monitor their water usage.
“If residents are unsure about which activities are permitted under emergency water restrictions or would like to access water saving tools and tips, they are encouraged to contact Council on 1300 697 372 or visit www.sdrc.qld.gov.au”