Local management arrangements for SunWater irrigation channels
In response to concerns raised by local irrigators, we have reviewed transitioning SunWater's 8 channel irrigation schemes to local management arrangements (LMA), where local irrigators would own and operate the schemes.
This work began on 1 July 2017, in line with the Water (Local Management Arrangements) Amendment Act 2017.
A detailed assessment was made of the benefits and support of a move to LMA, with interim boards established for each scheme putting forward a business case.
As a result of this assessment, we have decided to proceed with the transition in some cases, while others will continue to be operated by SunWater.
St George scheme
The St George scheme transitioned to LMA on 30 June 2018.
The Theodore scheme transitioned to LMA on 2 October 2018.
The Emerald scheme transitioned to LMA on 30 June 2019.
The Eton scheme transitioned to LMA on 31 March 2020.
Find out more
Read more about the LMA irrigation channel schemes.
Schemes not transitioning
The investigation phase of local management was completed in December 2017.
In Bundaberg, Burdekin-Haughton, Lower Mary and Mareeba-Dimbulah, irrigators undertook additional work to prepare revised business proposals.
Bundaberg scheme and Lower Mary scheme
Bundaberg and Lower Mary formally withdrew from the local management process in 2017.
SunWater will continue to own and operate the Bundaberg and Lower Mary irrigation schemes in partnership with local communities and industries.
Burdekin-Haughton scheme and Mareeba-Dimbulah scheme
The assessment of the business case proposals for the Burdekin-Haughton and Mareeba-Dimbulah schemes was completed in March 2019.
The assessment found too much uncertainty as to whether the transition to LMA would deliver the best outcome for the long-term sustainability of the Burdekin-Haughton and Mareeba-Dimbulah schemes.
This means the most viable option for irrigators and customers at this time is for SunWater to continue the operation and maintenance of the Burdekin-Haughton and Mareeba-Dimbulah scheme in partnership with the local community.
Last reviewed 03 April 2020