Minister visits canal

By Country News

The Mulwala Canal is vital to local farmers and their communities, according to Federal Agriculture and Water Resources Minister David Littleproud.

Mr Littleproud got to see first-hand the strategic importance and national significance of the iconic piece of infrastructure when he toured Murray Irrigation’s operational area last week.

The tour, hosted by Murray Irrigation chief executive officer Michael Renehan and chair Phil Snowden, included stops at the Mulwala Canal offtake and The Drop hydroelectric power station, before an official opening of the Finley town supply regulator.

Mr Renehan said the minister was impressed by the scale of the company’s operations.

‘‘We were able to show the minister some of the upgrades we’ve made under the Commonwealth-funded (private-public partnership) project,’’ Mr Renehan said.

‘‘The Mulwala Canal is the backbone of our water delivery system, so it was good for him to see it in action.

‘‘The minister was also interested to know more about our customers and how the Mulwala Canal plays a part in supporting them.’’

The recently upgraded Finley town supply regulator — one of 65 regulators upgraded under PIIOP3 — was officially opened as part of the tour.

‘‘The Mulwala Canal is vital to farmers and their communities,’’ Mr Littleproud said.

‘‘Upgrades like this (to the Finley town supply regulator) mean irrigators can make the best use of their water.

‘‘I know that irrigators in the NSW Murray have been doing it tough with NSW yet to make an allocation to general security this year, but when it does rain, and it will, being able to get it when you need it makes all the difference.

‘‘The new (Finley town supply) regulator will cut maintenance costs, increases safety and helps to future-proof water delivery in the region.’’