Riordan said the project would receive recycled water, which would then continue down a pipeline to Lake Colac, being of great benefit to local communities.
"This important source of recycled water, which is currently being pumped out to sea, would not only drought proof this region and support the growth of major agricultural enterprises but would enable the approvals of important projects such as Cape Otway Road Australia development (CORA) at Winchelsea and the Eden Project in Anglesea to be fast tracked, providing important community benefits, tourist destinations and employment.
"This is a unique opportunity to put vital water back in to the environment while being sustainable and having a low impact on local waterways. The cost of building this important pipeline to Anglesea and the South West would be no more than the amount spent on the replacement of one level crossing in Melbourne yet the Government is balking on the grounds of cost.
"The estimated value of the Eden project alone would be in the vicinity of 1300 jobs and more than $350 million in economic benefits. Imagine what the value of a consistent and reliable source of good quality water would mean to our whole region?
“This region needs the kind of investment that is freely given to our city counterparts. A consistent and reliable source of good quality, potable water will change the landscape and ensure the future success of our region, providing economic and environmental benefits to ensure employment and business opportunities for our local communities.
“Pumping massive amounts of precious water out to sea makes no economic or environmental sense. Discussions with Anglesea community members and local businesses have shown overwhelming support for the benefits that would flow on from a reliable source of water enabling the Eden Project to become a reality.
“The government needs to be proactive in encouraging this kind of development in our region.”