C-17 aircraft have been used to ferry a water purification plant to combat the dire situation in Tuvalu.
C-17 aircraft have been used to ferry a water purification plant to combat the dire situation in Tuvalu. Contributed

Amberley's water mission

A DEFENCE Force C-17A aircraft based at RAAF Amberley has played a key role in delivering a water purification plant to Tuvalu, where water shortages are crippling the island nation.

The much-needed desalination equipment could not be taken directly to Tuvalu because airstrips were unable to support large aircraft, so the Australian and New Zealand Defence Forces worked together on the humanitarian mission in a co-ordinated effort.

On Monday morning RAAF's No 36 Squadron collected a water purification plant from New Zealand and delivered it to Apia, Samoa. The NZDF then sent the smaller C-130 to fly the equipment in smaller loads from Samoa to Tuvalu.

Air Marshal Geoff Brown, Chief of Air Force, recognised the importance of RAAF Amberley's aircraft squadrons in the wake of recent disasters in Queensland, Victoria, Japan and New Zealand.

Low rainfall and rising sea levels have caused a severe shortage of drinking water.

Ipswich Mayor Paul Pisasale said this is a difficult time for those in Ipswich who still have family in the Pacific and he was proud of the work done by the RAAF Amberley.

"The C-17A squadrons have been instrumental in helping those in disaster situations," he said.



Riverlink chair slams council's land grab as 'insulting'

premium_icon Riverlink chair slams council's land grab as 'insulting'

Bob Ell is fighting for "fair" compensation

What's on in Ipswich this weekend

What's on in Ipswich this weekend

10 things to do across the region

Child minding service a hit at city restaurant

premium_icon Child minding service a hit at city restaurant

Have a meal while someone else watches the kids