Pembroke Resources has received key federal approvals for its $1 billion Olive Downs coking coal project, south-east of Moranbah in Central Queensland.
The final approvals under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act pave the way for the granting of mining leases and the start of construction, the company says.
It follows the grant of the Environmental Authority by the Queensland Government in 2019.
“This is an exciting time for the company and the region’s wider community,” Pembroke chairman and chief executive officer Barry Tudor said.
“The EPBC approvals, and the EA, which was granted last year, represent key milestones for the project.
“The next key milestone is securing the grant of the mining leases, which will enable us to commence construction. We expect these mining leases to be granted in the coming months.”
The news has been welcomed by Minister for Resources, Water and Northern Australia Keith Pitt.
“This is great news for regional jobs and businesses in the important coal mining area around Moranbah. It is important for the Queensland economy and for the national economy,” Mr Pitt said.
“The Olive Downs metallurgical coal mine will be part of our journey of recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. It will add to strength of the resources sector as it leads Australia’s economic recovery”.
Importantly Pembroke Resources had signed an agreement with the traditional owners, represented by the Barada Barna Aboriginal Corporation, to provide employment opportunities at the mine along with other benefits, Mr Pitt said.
Mine to run 79 years, support 1000-plus jobs
Pembroke is forecasting the project to produce up to 15Mtpa saleable coal over a 79-year mine life.
The mine is expected to create up to 500 jobs during construction and more than 1000 new jobs when the project reaches full operation.
The project is backed by Pembroke’s major shareholder, Denham Capital, a leading global energy and resources private equity firm.
Pembroke says it has assembled all the elements required to commence construction following the grant of the mining leases, including access to power, water, rail and port.
It says it will provide workers with an opportunity to live in towns near the mine including Moranbah and Dysart.
The conditions which apply to its federal approvals include a $1 million contribution to the establishment of a regional fund for improved long-term conservation of koalas and greater gliders in the Bowen Basin.
Pembroke will contribute $100,000 a year over 10 years to the new regional environmental fund while also ensuring:
- restrictions on the removal of riparian koala and greater glider habitats
- maintenance and restoration of current riparian habitats
- management of environmental offsets, including on a large offset property of 34,000ha
- engagement of independent species experts to increase scientific knowledge around the undertakings and to establish a restoration program to revegetate key riparian habitat
Win for Queensland resources industry
Federal Member for Capricornia Michelle Landry said the finalising of the mine’s environment assessment was another win for the resources industry in Queensland.
“In Capricornia during the 2018-19 financial year, the resources industry contributed around $1.1 billion in wages paid to 7,070 full-time jobs, with $5.2 billion in royalties shared across Queensland.
“Around $1.6 billion was also spent on goods and services locally, benefitting around 1,430 local businesses.
“The resources industry is alive and well in Queensland and the approval of another project will go a long way in assisting the state as we move into a post-COVID-19 economy.”
- Potential suppliers for the Olive Downs project should register interest HERE