The second stage of the South West Loddon Pipeline Project has begun.
Minister for Water Lisa Neville announced the start of construction on stage two following final environmental and cultural heritage approvals.
The pipeline project will secure supply to communities, households and farmers in the South West Loddon region.
Related: Pipeline to connect Loddon farmers
Stage two of the project will provide water to the rural communities of Skinners Flat, Fiery Creek, Arnold, Bridgewater, East Gowar, Wedderburn South and Kurting.
Almost 1300 kilometres of pipeline will be installed and will service 260 rural farming enterprises and 370 lifestyle properties over an area of 2,900 square kilometres with a reticulated water supply.
The new pipeline extends the existing Wimmera-Mallee stock and domestic pipeline, covering a greater area to provide a more secure rural water supply to sustain a viable regional economy.
Dry conditions have challenged the region over the past two decades and put great stress on a number of local farming operations.
The state government is putting $40 million to the $80.6 million project.
“(Providing) water security for farmers and the agriculture sector is good for the well-being of agriculture communities, for jobs, and for liveability,” Ms Neville said.
“The project will deliver better overall management of water resources by connecting the Wimmera-Glenelg system to the west with the larger Goulburn system in north central Victoria.”
Stage one of the project was delivered and officially opened by the Minister in October last year.
The project is expected to be completed by mid-2019.