LIAM PARSONS | The Cairns Post
Mr Ariel's plan to build a 2,200km pipeline to transport fresh water from the Papua New Guinea highlands could secure funding from PNG as early as this week.
But the Queensland government isn't even considering the proposal.
He says the vision to source water from the Mendi River and pipe it to Queensland under the Torres Strait has received the backing of the PNG government's Ninister responsible for infrastructure, who will take the plan to cabinet.
Mr Ariel, the Might and Power director, who is also a director of whitewater rafting company Raging Thunder, said the project, which would siphon eight gigalitres of fresh water every 24 hours, had been well received during a trip to PNG before Easter.
He said a reliable water injection was key in making northern Australia a viable base something outlined this week by mining magnates Andrew Forrest and Gina Rinehart, who have called on incentives to be put in place to attract people to the north.
It follows a leaked plan by Opposition leader Tony Abbott that discussed creating special economic zones for the tropics.
"The premier and (Tony) Abbott both talk about decentralisation and utilising north Queensland both in a resource angle and agricultural angle and what's lacking is water supply," Mr Ariel said.
"This goes towards solving that problem.''
Mr Ariel said the plan would help solve many problems surrounding the Murray Darling Basin.
"This project can deliver the equivalent of 8,000 Olympic swimming size pools of water per 24 hours, year round," he said.
"This will irrigate the marginal grazing land along the route, turning it into agricultural land, terminating at Augathella in central Queensland which is the northern headwaters of the Murray Darling river systems
"The Murray Darling problem is not going to go away," he said.
A spokesperson for Queensland Energy and Water Supply Minister Mark McArdle said the proposal was not currently under active consideration.