Locals are mystified by the Labor Government’s recent plans which will ultimately mothball the Tod Reservoir, according to Liberal Member for Flinders Peter Treloar.
While plans to strengthen dam walls have been labelled as an upgrade, it will in fact permanently diminish the capacity of the reservoir.
The Tod Reservoir has not been utilised for potable water since 2002, but has provided a contingency supply and additional water security for the Eyre Peninsula.
Member for Flinders Peter Treloar said it would be a waste of about $7 million required to undertake the infrastructure upgrade.
“It would be a crying shame to essentially walk away from a lot of the infrastructure that has been in existence for more than 80 years, leaving not much more than a puddle,” he said.
“It is certainly workable, and provides that little bit of water security for Eyre Peninsula.
“The Tod has an iconic status on Eyre Peninsula and surely, as technology advances, this one gigalitre capacity reservoir should have some useful purpose and at least provide extra water security for the EP.”
Mr Treloar has written to Water Minister Ian Hunter, asking the Government to reassess the proposal until adequate consultation with the community, local councils and stakeholders is completed.
“The fragility of our water resources on the EP continues to be one of our major challenges, and I am concerned that SA Water’s most recent project is not the correct course of action for our community and region,” he said.
Mr Treloar believes we have an opportunity, via third-party funding access legislation, for new parties to come into the water market.
“I think the days of large desal plants are well over, despite this Labor Government having famously promised way back in 2002 that a desal plant would be built on the Eyre Peninsula,” he said.
“The time is ripe for private investment companies to step into the water market in SA, particularly in coastal towns such as Ceduna, Streaky Bay, Port Neill, possibly even the Tod Reservoir – the list goes on – where companies could invest in small desalination plants.”