Thursday, August 12, 2010

Bowen Basin Coal Mine Approved

Bowen Basin Coal Mine Approved

The government in the Australian state of Queensland has approved the development of a A$4 billion coal mine in the state’s Bowen Basin region that will create over1500 new jobs. However, the government also announced said the development was subject to a raft of strict development and operating constraints.

The Caval Ridge project is proposed by the BHP Billiton Mitsubishi Alliance and plans an open-cast mine that straddles the Peak Downs Highway, near Moranbah, 170 kilometres south-west of Mackay.

State treasurer Andrew Fraser said the government's decision was based on the coordinator-general's evaluation, which followed over 18 months of environmental impact assessments.

The state’s conditions set clear principles and procedures with respect to air quality monitoring, dust and water management, community consultation and the mitigation of potential social impacts of the mine.

The Federal Minister for Environment will assess the report under Commonwealth environmental legislation.

Around 1200 construction jobs and 495 ongoing operational jobs will be created for up to 30 years.

Construction of the mine could start in 2011, with first coal exports by 2014.

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