The Nathan Dam and Pipelines Project is a major initiative aimed at providing long-term, reliable water supplies to mining, power, urban and existing agricultural customers in the Surat Coal Basin and the Dawson-Callide sub-region of Central Queensland.
Water from the dam may also be called on to address critical water supply needs in the lower Fitzroy and other parts of Queensland.
The proposed Nathan Dam site is located just upstream of Nathan Gorge on the Dawson River, approximately 70 kilometres downstream of Taroom and 315 kilometres upstream of where the Dawson and Fitzroy rivers meet.
Depending on the final design, Nathan Dam is expected to have a capacity of up to 888,000 megalitres.
The Nathan Pipeline will run from Nathan Dam to the Surat Basin, potentially extending as far as Warra.
In 2006 the Queensland Government released its Central Queensland Regional Water Supply Strategy, which identified Nathan Dam as the preferred short to medium-term water supply solution in Queensland’s Dawson-Callide sub-region.
In July 2007, SunWater was appointed as the proponent to develop a business case for the Project. As part of the business case development, detailed studies have been undertaken to determine optimal dam and pipeline design and costs, expected water availability and demands, and the overall environmental, social and economic impacts of the Project. An Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the project was finalised and released for public comment in 2012. SunWater is currently finalising a supplementary EIS.