Paradise Dam is approximately 20km north-west of Biggenden and 80km south-west of Bundaberg on the Burnett River. It is a key component of the Bundaberg water supply scheme.
Damage to the dam during the 2011 and 2013 floods was more significant than expected. The dam had a number of structural issues that need to be addressed.
During 2020 and early 2021 Sunwater lowered the dam and completed essential works to improve the safety of the dam for people living downstream.
The dam is now safer than it was, but is not within the acceptable level of risk for the long term.
Since late-2021, Sunwater has been working to safely return the dam to its original height.
As part of this project, further concerns about long-term strength and quality of the dam’s concrete have been revealed, that mean repairing the dam is not feasible.
The Government has accepted Sunwater’s recommendation to build a new dam wall, just downstream of the existing structure.
Sunwater is progressing a detailed business case for a replacement dam wall on the Burnett River to ensure a safe and secure water supply for the Bundaberg region for future generations.
Design work on a new structure has begun and project costs and timeframes will be confirmed as part of the business case process.
You can learn more about the issues with the dam, and the next steps on Sunwater’s website.
The Queensland Government and Sunwater continue to work closely with the Bundaberg community and irrigators to ensure the issues of safety and water security are carefully considered.
Extensive stakeholder engagement has been undertaken through Sunwater’s stakeholder engagement forums - the Paradise Dam industry forum and associated working groups and the Paradise Dam community reference group.
- The government made its decision to restore the dam to its original height after consideration of the Options evaluation report (PDF, 6.0MB)
- An Economic impact assessment (PDF, 323.3KB) was also undertaken in 2021 to provide additional analysis and information.
- Sunwater delivered the Paradise Dam essential works project as an initial step to ensure the safety of communities downstream of the dam.
- The former Building Queensland completed the Paradise Dam options assessment in February 2020, which ruled out decommissioning Paradise Dam and provided the basis for the options assessment.
- For more information on water allocations for the Bundaberg water supply scheme, visit the Sunwater website.
- The Paradise Dam Commission of Inquiry conducted initial investigations into the structural issues at Paradise Dam.
- The Paradise Dam Commission of Inquiry report was delivered to the government on 30 April 2020.
- The Queensland Government publicly released the report and the Queensland Government’s response (PDF, 300.4KB) on 21 May 2020. All 8 of the Commission’s recommendations have been adopted.
- Read more information about the project at Sunwater’s website.
Last updated: 11 Jan 2024