PERTH (miningweekly.com) – The Queensland government has called for public comment on the proposed A$1-billion Olive Downs coal mine, releasing its draft environmental impact statement (EIS).
Minister for State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning Cameron Dick said on Thursday that the proposed project would create an average of 500 jobs a year during construction and be an economic driver for local communities.
“Pembroke Olive Downs proposes to develop an opencut metallurgical coal mine in the Bowen basin,” Dick said.
“When the opencut mine is up and running, it could maintain an average of 1 000 operational jobs and produce up to 15-million tonnes of coal per year. Importantly, Pembroke Resources will encourage workers to live in local towns like Moranbah, Nebo, Dysart and Middlemount and provide the necessary accommodation for them there, which is exactly what our government’s Strong and Sustainable Resource Communities Act is all about.”
Fully developed, the complex 40 km south east of Moranbah will be one of the largest metallurgical coal mines in the world.
The project proposal includes coal handling and crushing facilities at the mine’s Olive Downs South and Willunga precincts, a rail link to transport coal to the Dalrymple Bay Coal Terminal, and a water pipeline and power transmission line.
The proposed mine would be midway between Moranbah and Dysart and includes an 18-km rail spur to the Norwich Park Branch railway, a water pipeline connecting to the existing Eungella pipeline, an electricity transmission line and access roads.
The project was declared a coordinated project in February 2017.
Dick noted that the resources sector was fundamental to jobs and business opportunities, particularly in the regional communities, and rigorous but also timely environmental assessment processes were important to keeping this vital industry sustainable.
Queensland Resources Council CEO Ian Macfarlane added that the project would further strengthen the resources sector’s contribution to the Queensland economy.
“Currently, the resources sector in Queensland is creating a new job and investing A$1-million every hour while exporting A$1-billion every week and delivering almost A$100-million to the Queensland government every week,” Macfarlane said.
The draft EIS is available online and in local libraries for public comment until October 10, 2018.