Water Security and Agribusiness
The mighty Fitzroy River is Rockhampton’s lifeblood. It’s the essence of the region’s environment, prosperity, lifestyle and wellbeing. It provides a sense of space and place; an identity as a vibrant river city.
The combination of abundant grazing land and reliable water established Rockhampton as Queensland’s premier cattle producing region. The City is home to major processing and supply chain facilities including
two abattoirs and the Central Queensland Livestock Exchange.
The Fitzroy River Agricultural Corridor has been identified for intensive agriculture development. This potential will be facilitated through the Lower Fitzroy River Infrastructure Project incorporating the raising of the Eden Bann Weir
and the construction of Rookwood Weir. The proposed Rookwood and Eden Bann Weirs will add 112,000ML to the existing 137,000ML of stored water capacity.
Within the corridor, the potential exists to establish broadacre crops, horticulture and intensive livestock enterprises. This potential is being pursued through the Growing Central Queensland program, an initiative to
capture sustainable agribusiness opportunities.
The opportunity also exists to use available water and suitable land on the peripheries of Rockhampton enterprises. These enterprises have the potential to produce high value, labour intensive products,
adding value to Rockhampton’s economy and lifestyle experience.
To sustain these advantages and progress these opportunities, Rockhampton Regional Council will:
- Appoint an Industry Champion to identify local market opportunities and impediments and advocate for water security and agribusiness
- Work with the State and Commonwealth Government to sustainably manage and exploit the Lower Fitzroy System water resources
- Support the Lower Fitzroy River Infrastructure Project and the objectives and efforts of Growing Central Queensland
- Pursue options to increase the Barrage storage volume via increasing operating setpoint controls and potential augmentation of the barrage sill and/or gates
- Work with local land holders, Central Queensland University, the State and Commonwealth Governments to determine feasibility and if appropriate, develop the business case for irrigated small cropping on the peripheries to Rockhampton City.