NQ Dry Tropics

Lower Burdekin Water is proud to work in partnership with NQ Dry Tropics. Another recent project completed conjunctively with NQ Dry Tropics and Burdekin Shire Council was the removal of aquatic weeds from wetlands in the Lower Burdekin. NQ Dry Tropics have provided a video demonstrating how Saltwater Creek in the Southern Division has been transformed by removing aquatic weeds. You can check out video footage on NQ Dry Tropics Facebook page or by visiting youtube:

Media Releases

Audit reveals big power bill savings at Burdekin pump station - 20/10/17

Photo: Cr Mike Brunker, David Sartori (Executive Officer - Lower Burdekin Water), Mark Bailey (Minister for Energy and Water Supply), Michael Caspanello (Chairman - Lower Burdekin Water) at the Kilrie Gully Pump Station

 Lower Burdekin Water cut their power consumption by 58,000kWh and demand by 105kVA resulting in annual cost savings of $20,000 (or 25%) at the Kilrie Gully Pumpstation. You can view the Case Study performed by Ergon Energy here  **

Completed Projects

Rocky Ned Road Gate and Fishway

  • Project involved replacing/upgrading the existing culverts beneath Rocky Ned Road, designing and installing a fishway and installing an AWMA automated gate. Objectives:
    • eliminate risk of existing damaged culverts beneath Rocky Ned Road
    • eliminate risk associated with the current board structure in the upstream culvert head wall
    • better regulate the flows through the Warren's Gully System
    • enable fish passage through the culvert

Roncato's Diversion Gate

  • Project involved installation of an AWMA Automatic control gate at the inlet to the Roncato Diversion Pipeline in the Kilrie Gully System. The gate allows in conjuncture with the Kilrie Gully Gate to utilise McAlister pump more and subsequently reduce the operating cost to the organisation. The gate also reduces the environmental impact to the area at the bottom end of the Roncato’s Diversion.

Rocks Energy Reduction

Red Lily Reconfiguration

  • LBW recently completed a project to reconfigure the entirety of the Red Lily Irrigation Scheme. The project was completed on schedule and was re-operational on 17 August 2018. Operational and environmental objectives were:
    • eliminate water wastage through the bottom end of the scheme
    • eliminate WHS risk associated with the board structure in Red Lily Lagoon
    • provide higher levels of customer service to growers in the scheme
    • reduce energy consumption of Red Lily Pumpstation
    • renewing end of life culverts in section of Sexton Road Channel
    • improve ecological function of downstream waterways by reducing/eliminating water wastage through the bottom end of the system

Klondyke Lilliesmere

Variable Speed Drive
  • Installation of VSD’s to improve efficiencies and services to ratepayers was completed on 16 March 2018.
Automatic Weed Screen
  • Automatic weed screen installed and commissioned on 9 July 2018

Saltwater Creek gate and fishway

Lower Burdekin Water and NQ Dry Tropics recently installed an automated regulation gate and rock ramp fishway adjacent to Inkerman Station Road.  The project had the following environmental and LBW operational objectives: Environmental:
  • Reduce excess water entering Saltwater Creek to improve hydrological conditions and reduce extent of invasive exotic and native flora species in Saltwater Creek; and
  • Improve fish migration for juvenile fish species to enable movement into the upper reaches of Saltwater Creek
LBW Operations
  • Reduce excess water entering saltwater creek thereby reducing LBW’s energy consumption and pumping costs;
  • Enable water to be backed up into an existing lagoon to enable artificial recharge of the aquifer; and
  • Provide better customer service for upstream customers.


Hutchings Lagoon Gate "Cislowski Road"

Lower Burdekin Water have installed an automated regulation gate and vertical slot fishway adjacent to Cislowski Road in the Plantation Creek System.  The project has the following environmental and LBW operational objectives: Environmental:
  • Improve ecological function of wet land at bottom end of system
  • Allow fish passage through the modified structure
LBW Operations
  • Reduce WHS risk associated with current board structure
  • Increase reliability of pumping pool, efficiency and reduce pumping costs
  • Better control water through entirety of Plantation Creek system
  • Increase underground recharge through Hutchings Lagoon and Pest Board recharge pits


Alva Creek Fishway - Collaborative Partnership with NQ Dry Tropics

NQ Dry Tropics' work supports healthy fish stocks by helping juvenile native species such as barra, mangrove jack and mullet migrate from their estuarine breeding grounds to inland freshwater nurseries. This coastal rock ramp fishway, completed today in the Lower Burdekin, is one tool that helps fish navigate barriers that prevent them from completing their lifecycle. It was constructed in a collaborative partnership between NQ Dry Tropics and Lower Burdekin Water, as part of NQ Dry Tropics Reef Rescue Systems Repair project, funded by the Australian Department of the Environment and Energy Reef Program. The site of this particular fishway is a bund constructed some decades ago to prevent saltwater encroaching on irrigation delivery areas. This type of fishway creates rock pools where fish can climb up in slow increments. It provides areas for them to have a little rest, put their feet up, and get ready for the next leg of their journey. This location connects to Lilliesmere Lagoon upstream, which we hope will be repopulated by up to 40 species in future, including smaller fodder species such as the Empire Gudgeon.

Fords Gully Relift VSD
  • Project focus on installation of VSD’s to improve efficiencies and services to ratepayers.
    • To be completed during the next available window of opportunity in 2017-2018 financial year

Plain Road Culvert Upgrade

The Plain Road Culvert upgrade was a joint project undertaken by Lower Burdekin Water and Burdekin Shire Council. The project aimed to replace the existing damage culvert structure and allow for an increase to the capacity of the Warren’s Gully system. The project was completed on the 8th of June 2017, with the Warren’s Gully system re-opened on the 14th of June 2017. The project was completed under budget and within schedule. LBW would like to thank all effected growers for your cooperation during the works.


Kalamia Lagoon Regulation  

Joint project between NQ Dry tropics and LBW to improve water control/efficiencies, water quality and fish passage in the bottom end of the Plantation Creek system. To achieve this aim, civil works on the Beach and Lilliesmere Road culverts including  the construction of fish passages and regulator gate installations was required.  Commissioning of the sites was conducted in April 2017

McDowell Pipeline

The Stage 1 upgrade of the McDowell Pipeline was completed on the 6th of July for a total shutdown of the McDowells system for 9 weeks. The project replaced approximately 1200m of the existing 1350 reinforced concrete (RC) pipe which was constructed in 1970, with 1300 glass reinforced plastic pipe (GRP). The project was completed under budget and within schedule. LBW would like to thank all effected growers for your cooperation during the works.

Lilliesmere Pump Station upgrade

The Lilliesmere PS upgrade was completed on the 27th of July for a total shutdown of the Lilliesmere system for 9 weeks. The Lilliesmere PS was originally constructed in the early 1970’s. The project involved the replacement of the existing discontinued pumps with three (3) submersible Flygt pumps, the removal of the existing switchroom and replacement with a new switchroom, installation of variable speed drives onto the new pump units and the refurbishment of the existing concrete pump-well structure. As a result of the works the pump stations capacity, reliability, maintainability, energy efficiency and safety to operational staff has been increased. The project was completed under budget and LBW would like to thank all effected growers for your cooperation during the works.

Kilrie Gully – Regulator Gate

Project aims to better control water through the bottom end of the Kilrie Gully division via the installation of an automatic control gate. This subsequently aims to improve the LBW efficiency and reduce risk to LBW operational staff. The gate was commissioned in April 2017

Toll Road - Construction 2

Toll Road Project

The Northern Division, in conjunction with NQ Dry Tropics, recently completed a project to upgrade the culverts of the Toll Road section of Sheepstation Creek. The project consisted of the installation of the new culvert sections, lay-flat automated gate and a fish ladder. The construction phase of this project commenced in June 2013 and was complete a couple of weeks longer after the expected due date. The project was completed without injury or incident and under budget and the infrastructure is now commissioned and working well. The new infrastructure will reduce workplace health and safety risks and labour requirements associated with controlling water, while improving drainage and compliance for fish passage.

 Rita Island Switch House

Rita Island Switch House Upgrade

The switch house for the Rita Island pump station was upgraded due to various incidents of vandalism against the previous structure. The project scope was to rehouse the pump station to provide a more secure structure around the electrical switchboard. This upgrade was completed on time and under budget without any injuries.


Rocks Pump Station Upgrade

The upgrade of the Rocks pump station was a major project for the Northern Division which was completed during the 2012/2013 financial year. The project was divided into various stages which included an electrical upgrade as well as re-lining the pipelines. The re-lining stage was the major component of the upgrade and was undertaken to address the multiple leaks that had formed over the life of the pipelines. ITS Trenchless (a Townsville based company) was engaged to perform the re-lining works - all of which were completed without injury or incident, ahead of schedule and within budget.

Ongoing Research Projects

Airdmillan Rd Project PicThe Northern Division is a statutory groundwater management authority, responsible for the economic and environmentally sustainable management of the groundwater resource within the proclaimed area of the Burdekin delta. Over the recent years, salinity issues have become apparent in several coastal areas of the Lower Burdekin Delta. In the Airdmillan Road area, which is close to the coast, steadily rising groundwater salinity levels have been reported.With the present salinity level, farmers have continued use of the groundwater for irrigation purposes. As part of its proactive management approach, the Northern Division wishes to put in place a strategy to ensure the groundwater resource continues to be used in a sustainable manner. The Board commissioned CSIRO to investigate the probable cause of the salinity and make suitable recommendations towards future sustainable management in the area. The report confirmed a rising trend in groundwater salinity in the Airdmillan area. Although there is a lack of data, the report attributes the main cause to be the volume of water extracted from pumps in the area resulting in upconing of saline water from depth. The study made a number of recommendations to help manage the groundwater resource in the Airdmillan Road area, including metering of pumped volumes, supplementing groundwater with surface water, continued monitoring of salinity and moderation of water use through efficient irrigation practices. To better understand the whole system and then use that understanding to better manage the water resources in the region "Water Resources Observation Network (WRON) Burdekin Project" has been initiated by CSIRO. Rockwater Australia Pty Ltd has now been commissioned to further assess the findings of the CSIRO report taking particular account of geophysical factors. The report should be finalised in the near future. This consultancy will develop a conceptual water management plan for the Airdmillan area that will set in place a framework to address the rising salinity problem by sustainable use of groundwater, to be achieved by overall water usage conservation and partial substitution of surface water for groundwater. The proposed conceptual management plan will provide a framework for investigation, development, implementation and monitoring of water usage in the Airdmillan area.