News and Views

Pipeline proposal a step closer for Yarra valley growers

The Victorian Government is supporting a proposal to pipe recycled water to wine makers in the Coldstream and Gruyere area, to secure their water supply and help them produce more wine.

Victorian Minister for Water Lisa Neville and Member for Monbulk James Merlino met with growers and landholders in the Yarra Valley to discuss the $15.6 million Coldstream Recycled Water Pipeline project.

The Government has submitted a business case to the Commonwealth under the National Water Infrastructure Development Fund and is awaiting the outcome of the assessment process.

The application outlines a strong case for the Commonwealth to invest $7.79 million, with the remainder of the project cost coming from local landholders in the region.

Visiting local Yarra Valley winery Soumah Wines, Ms Neville and Mr Merlino encouraged the Commonwealth to assess the project so work can commence as soon as possible.

The new water pipeline would supply 1,000 megalitres of recycled water from Yarra Valley Water’s treatment plant at Lilydale through a 46 kilometre pipeline to 50 growers, mainly strawberry farms and vineyards in the Coldstream district.

The Yarra Valley wine region, world-renowned for its wine and vineyards, generates about $58 million to the Victorian economy annually with more than $340 million generated in wine exports every year.

Water security is a significant risk for many of these businesses in the Yarra Valley who rely heavily on rainfall or their own dams or catchments to keep their crops hydrated.

Access to a reliable and secure source of water will enable these businesses to expand and will support local jobs, increase tourism to the Valley and support new development in the area.

There are 160 wineries in the region with the proposed pipeline project to benefit a number of well-renowned wineries including Rochford, Giant Steps, Oakridge, Maddens Lane, Soumah, and Levantine Hill.

The Government through its Water for Victoria plan supports the use of recycled water to ease the burden on drinking water supplies, plan for climate change and support economic development and growth.

The Plan outlines how to make the best use of all sources of water – including recycled water – which can be re-purposed for irrigation and watering parks and gardens.

Source: Vic Government

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