A DONALD waterway has been drought-proofed with a new connection to the Wimmera-Mallee Pipeline.
Water Minister Lisa Neville visited the town on Thursday to announced the completion of the $170,000 upgrade to Donald Weir Pool.
The upgrade was funded as part of the $2.98-million Sport and Recreational Water Infrastructure Program to assist drought affected communities across north-western Victoria.
The Wimmera-Mallee Pipeline is now connected to a stormwater pipeline to supply water to the Donald Weir Pool and transfer harvested stormwater to keep sporting grounds in the town hydrated and green.
Donald 2000 committee chairman John McConville said everyone in the town was excited about the works being completed.
“As it was, when the river was dry it created a bad stench, especially in summer,” he said.
“It made the town most unattractive and people driving past didn’t want to stop.
“But now we have water again, it’s made a real difference.
Mr McConville said the Donald Weir Pool was also gifted with 100 megalitres of water from the Donald Mineral Sands.
“However, we haven’t had to use any of it yet because of the season we’ve had,” he said.
Ms Neville said the Donald Weir Pool was a wonderful project.
“This will ensure the pool stays open, even in dry periods,” she said.
“Waterways are critical for the wellbeing of communities, particularly in times of drought, so it’s great to be able to provide more water security across the north-west.”
“I’ve seen first-hand the impacts of drought in the region, which is why I’m proud that we’re working with communities to ensure they get the support they need.”
“These are fantastic projects that will deliver social, environmental and economic benefits for the communities for years to come.”
Mr McConville said while in Donald, Ms Neville also announced $2 million for Sea Lake’s Green Lake.
“That is great news for them – good things are happening all around the region,” he said.
The state government has completed a $72,000-business case to address options to reduce seepage issues at Green Lake near Sea Lake.
The proposal examined a range of potential solutions to stop seepage from the lake bed to improve water quality and ensure it is available for recreational use.