The first stage is due for completion by 2011. So far 76 boreholes have been advanced into the foundation, with 57 bore holes along and near the preferred dam alignment revealing good rock.

In the mean time federal senators have moved to launch a senate inquiry into the Traveston Crossing dam plan. The Deputy Premier of the state government has welcomed the move, and stated that Queensland would work with an inquiry, although it could delay the construction of the dam. The state government, however, is proceeding with the Environmental Impact Study (EIS) for the project despite the proposed federal Senate inquiry. The terms of reference for the EIS are expected to be finalised by April.

The senate inquiry announcement came in the wake of a report, commissioned by the Mary River Council of Mayors, condemning the dam proposal as economically, environmentally and socially unviable. The report, prepared by Sydney’s University of Technology and engineering firm Cardno, says the Traveston dam is an unreliable and costly project to secure the regional water supply. The report’s summary concluded the increase in supply from the dam would not assist in the short term during the current severe drought, and was not needed in the longer term.

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