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Seqwater pouring $1 million into protecting Brisbane River

Seqwater will spend almost $1 million over the next three years to improve the water quality of one of South East Queensland’s most important waterways.

The utility has partnered with Healthy Land and Water to work with landholders along the Brisbane River to make their properties more flood-resilient and in turn protect the catchment.

Nine properties are earmarked to have work carried out so far. This will include revegetating riverbanks, installing fencing and stabilising gullies.

Work is already underway at a property in Pine Mountain, where Healthy Land and Water is securing an eroding gully by installing a rock chute and revegetating the area.

Healthy Land and Water CEO Julie McLellan said although the projects are relatively small scale they will make a significant difference to improving the health of the catchment.

“The region’s waterways are highly susceptible to erosion caused by storms and flooding, but solutions do exist and restoration will ensure we can protect agricultural land and ultimately secure Brisbane’s drinking water supply," McLellan said.

The Brisbane River supplies Seqwater’s largest water treatment plants at Mt Crosby, which Member for Ipswich West Jim Madden said makes it an extremely important resource that needs to be protected.

“Combined, the Mt Crosby west bank and east bank provide up to 50% of South East Queensland’s drinking water supply every day,” Madden said.

"Within the next 10 to 15 years, with population growth both plants will be supplying up to 60% of South East Queensland’s drinking water."

Seqwater’s partnership with Healthy Land and Water is part of a planned $20 million investment in the Brisbane River area over the next 20 years.

Seqwater CEO Neil Brennan said collaborating with stakeholders was a critical part of delivering high-quality water.

“This is a dedicated fund to work directly with private landholders to invest in projects that improve the condition of their land and deliver a direct water quality benefit,” Brennan said.

“It’s part of the overall partnership approach we are taking across South East Queensland, working with local catchment groups and councils to target on-ground works. Over the next year about 40% of our investment in catchments will be delivered by our partners.”

The partnership is also supported by the South East Queensland Council of Mayors, which will provide $85,000 through its Resilient Rivers Initiative over the next year.