Paradise Dam Essential Works

Paradise Dam Essential Works Project

Paradise Dam, Queensland

Ensuring the safety of communities downstream of Paradise Dam is Sunwater’s primary concern. Immediate essential works are necessary to lower the spillway in order to better manage community safety.

The Project

Damage to Paradise Dam during the region’s record flooding in 2013 was significantly more than expected. Since this event Sunwater has been working to repair and maintain the dam, including commencing the Paradise Dam Improvement Project. As part of the project, Sunwater conducted technical investigations that identified dam stability issues. A series of technical reports informed our decision to lower Paradise Dam’s wall, initially by five metres. The reports provide a comprehensive account of the dam’s stability issues and validate our decision to lower the dam wall.

Sunwater has established a Paradise Dam Community Reference Group, who are working with us to help keep communities informed and prepared while rectification work is undertaken.

For community enquiries on Paradise Dam, contact: 3120 0270 or

What’s involved?

Sunwater has reduced the dam’s capacity to 42 per cent to bring immediate safety for the downstream community and to facilitate essential work to lower the dam’s wall. This will allow for better community safety management should an event like the 2013 flood of record occur again.

To achieve this, Sunwater transferred approximately 25,000 megalitres (ML) of customer-owned, but not yet diverted, water to the downstream Ned Churchward Weir and Ben Anderson Barrage. Sunwater also released 80,000 ML of unsold water owned by Sunwater, and made this available at no charge.

Proactively reducing the dam’s capacity ahead of the 2019/20 wet season will:

  • provide dry space below the work site to facilitate the lowering of the spillway
  • ensure site safety during these works
  • allow additional warning time for the community in the event of a significant flood.

Planning is underway to commence works to lower the spillway wall initially by five metres after the wet season around March 2020.

Dam safety

Sunwater has updated the Paradise Dam Emergency Action Plan and is working closely with the Local Disaster Management Group ahead of the coming wet season.

The Sunwater App provides the latest dam information and alerts at your fingertips. It is the perfect tool to stay informed about Sunwater dam operations especially during heavy rain and flood.

Major milestones

Forecast completion of Essential Works by end of 2020 (weather permitting).


Paradise Dam, Queensland
Approximately 20km north-west of Biggenden and 80km south-west of Bundaberg.

Questions and Answers

Paradise Dam Essential Works: Questions and Answers

Related Posts

Boating safety at Paradise Dam