South West Queensland
Roma, St George and the south-western towns of Charleville, Quilpie, Thargomindah and Cunnamulla are noted for their vast natural resources, diverse agricultural industries and community spirit. The rural towns are the lifeblood of the region and are commercial and administrative centres for many businesses. For example, Roma is home to the largest cattle saleyards in the southern hemisphere, and Charleville provides a base for the Royal Flying Doctor Service.
The region has a strong tradition in agriculture, a growing ecotourism industry, and a coal seam gas (CSG) and liquefied natural gas (LNG) energy sector emerging on the region's eastern fringes.
State and local governments have worked together to develop 2 regional plans for the South West:
These plans provide a guide for land use and development over the next 2 decades and are designed to strengthen the region's economy, inform the delivery of social services and infrastructure and protect the environment.
The South West is home to a strong sheep and cattle grazing industry as well as grain, cotton and forestry. It is a centre for agricultural innovations, developing sustainable farming practices and trialling climate adaptation practices.
In the south, St George services some of the state's most productive irrigation and cropping industries around the lower Balonne and MacIntyre rivers. In the far west, Quilpie services the Channel Country's grazing industries and Roma is a hub for the beef industry.
The South West is making a name as a hub for ecotourism. The region offers such activities as star gazing at the Charleville Cosmos Centre, making friends with the endangered bilby, or escaping into spectacular national parks, river systems and lakes.
Activities such as bushwalking, camping, fishing, birdwatching, and fossicking for opals are popular in this part of Queensland.
Although the Surat Basin energy province primarily falls in the Darling Downs area, it overlaps communities in the Maranoa. In turn, much of the South West will be affected by the growth of this sector.
- Learn more about the CSG-LNG industry in Queensland.
- Contact the local and regional councils of the Darling Downs region to find out more about specific towns and locations:
- Last reviewed
- November 8, 2013