Department of the Environment

Archived media releases and speeches

Senator the Hon Don Farrell

Parliamentary Secretary for Sustainability and Urban Water

Goulburn's water supply secured against drought

20 October 2011

Goulburn residents will benefit from a secure water supply in times of drought following the completion of the emergency Wingecarribee to Goulburn pipeline.

The 81 kilometre underground pipeline links the Goulburn water supply system to the Sydney Catchment Authority's water supply at Wingecarribee Reservoir near Moss Vale, New South Wales.

Parliamentary Secretary for Sustainability and Urban Water, Senator Don Farrell, said the Australian Government's contribution of $20 million to the project will ensure Goulburn residents have a steady water supply to see them through severe drought periods.

"The pipeline is capable of supplying the Goulburn community with up to 7.3 million litres of water a day during drought periods," Senator Farrell said.

"Not only will the pipeline supply water during times of drought, but it has the potential to be a long-term solution to meet the region's current and future water demands."

Goulburn is strategically located in the Sydney-Canberra corridor and is an important regional centre. The pipeline passes through mostly rural land and crosses various waterways and some existing services.

New South Wales Senator Ursula Stephens, a resident of Goulburn, has been a strong advocate for ensuring the project went ahead with $20 million in Australian Government funding.

Senator Stephens said a lot of care had been taken in the planning stages to consider technical, social, financial and environmental factors.

"It was especially important to ensure the pipeline was installed next to existing infrastructure easements, in order to avoid town centres and major roads and to reduce the need to clear large amounts of vegetation," she said.

"Importantly, the project will provide a healthy, safe and reliable water supply the Goulburn region."

Australian Government funding was provided through the Water Smart Australia program under its Water for the Future initiative.