State Government Logo

23 May 2019

Guy Barnett MP

Minister for Primary Industries and Water

2019-20 Budget: Irrigation benefits flow to regional Tasmania

The Hodgman Liberal Government’s irrigation developments are transforming Tasmanian agriculture, creating jobs and expanding farm production to meet the growing demand for Tasmania’s premium produce.

The 2019-20 State Budget is about maintaining the momentum and investing for growth, and our irrigation infrastructure is a key component of this plan. The Budget funds support for irrigation projects, including:

  • $70 million over four years for our Pipeline to Prosperity - Tranche 3 irrigation projects across the state;
  • Continuing our support for on farm energy initiatives, including the very popular On-farm Energy Irrigation Audit and Capital Grant program, and the $5.5 million Tasmanian Irrigation Renewable Energy Project. This is in addition to the review underway into electricity irrigation tariffs and the Farm Energy Advocate in Aurora Energy.

We are delivering the infrastructure our growing state needs with four Tranche 2 irrigation schemes now constructed and providing farmers across the state with unprecedented access to water. The fifth irrigation scheme, at Scottsdale, is expected to be completed in early 2020.

The commitment of $100 million in Commonwealth funding towards Tranche 3, enables the first phase of at least five irrigation projects to proceed, whilst Tasmanian Irrigation continues with the planning for other proposed schemes.

Pipeline to Prosperity in total is a $496 million long-term program which, when fully implemented would deliver 10 proposed irrigation schemes providing an additional 78,000 megalitres of water, creating thousands of jobs and injecting an estimated $114 million each year into the agriculture sector, and our economy more broadly.

As our economy continues to grow, the Budget supports and encourages growth that benefits all Tasmanians by delivering unprecedented infrastructure spending, and the State’s largest ever budget for health and education.

Providing farmers with reliable access to water is a key element of the Hodgman Liberal Government’s AgriFood Plan to grow the farm gate value of our agricultural sector to $10 billion per annum by 2050.