Irrigation is important for around 60% of Queensland’s sugarcane production and CANEGROWERS members need access to reliable supplies of water at a realistic cost. In fact, irrigated sugarcane accounts for 80% of Queensland's irrigation water use.

CANEGROWERS views irrigation water as an enabler of regional economic development and is working with government to ensure the efficient delivery of affordable water. CANEGROWERS has Position Statements on Water and the Water, Energy and Productivity nexus.

Local management

CANEGROWERS has supported the process of moving the management of irrigation schemes in key production areas from SunWater to local boards.

CANEGROWERS is urging the Queensland Government to ensure this transition to local management is fully funded and completed quickly.

During this transition, the current irrigation water price path, determined by the Queensland Competition Authority and capped at $2.00 plus CPI, should be maintained.

Efficient irrigation

CANEGROWERS has managed the Queensland Government Rural Water Use Efficiency for Irrigation Futures project (RWUE-IF) worth $2.87 million over four years.

Investment in water use efficiency and decision support systems such as Irrigweb, weather stations, moisture probes and pump efficiency has created significant water, energy and financial savings under the project.

Growers in the rising groundwater areas of the Burdekin Groundwater Management Area and Arriga basin have been able to access incentives for improving irrigation systems to reduce deep drainage and establish conjunctive use dewatering bores.

RWUE-IF has supported the production of CANEGROWERS Virtual Bus Tour videos.