Legislative Council: Wednesday, November 15, 2023


Bordertown Water Supply

The Hon. N.J. CENTOFANTI (Leader of the Opposition) (14:20): My question is to the Minister for Primary Industries and Regional Development. Has the minister completed her due diligence by checking the accuracy of a Hansard quote I read out yesterday from the Minister for Environment and Water, and is she now able to answer:

1. In line with the answer to the question without notice by the Minister for Environment and Water on 2 November 2023, can the minister now confirm that indeed no extra water will be available to Bordertown prior to 2028?

2. How can the Malinauskas government make a promise to build an extra 60 houses in Bordertown before 2028, given that there have been no substantive plans to provide the necessary infrastructure?

The Hon. C.M. SCRIVEN (Minister for Primary Industries and Regional Development, Minister for Forest Industries) (14:21): I thank the honourable member for her question. She does seem to be somewhat confused between the short-term plans and the longer term plans. While SA Water's existing drinking water network in Bordertown meets current customer demands, significant augmentation of SA Water's local water infrastructure is required to support the town's future projected demand associated with new developments.

I am advised SA Water has been working closely with the Tatiara District Council to understand local industrial and residential growth and has identified a range of infrastructure solutions to increase the capacity of the town's water network to enable this growth. These solutions include the construction of a new water storage tank, pump station and large water main within Bordertown.

SA Water advise that the new infrastructure will support council's development plans for around 29 industrial allotments, 200 residential allotments and an 80-bed commercial facility, while ensuring continued reliable water services for existing customers in the town. The development of the concept designs for this solution is underway and, subject to all required approvals, SA Water expects to commence construction in 2025.

At the same time, it is also important for SA Water to consider options towards ensuring a secure long-term water supply for Bordertown. As referenced by the Deputy Premier in the other place, SA Water has proposed funding in its 2024-28 regulatory submission to enable investigations into long-term water security options for the town. This initiative will include completing additional groundwater monitoring to update modelling previously developed by SA Water and the Department for Environment and Water to enhance SA Water's understanding of the complex interactions between the freshwater lens and the surrounding brackish aquifer.