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$1B coal revival ramps up in southern Qld

New Acland stage 3 truck
New Acland stage 3 truck

A reopened mine is lifting production and expanding its crew in Queensland’s Darling Downs region.

New Hope Corporation (NHC) recently revealed it is ramping-up output at its $1 billion New Acland Coal Stage 3 Expansion, 53km northwest of Toowoomba.

First coal has already been extracted with a further 950,000 tonnes expected to be produced during the 2024 financial year.

The proponent hopes to hire an extra 30 permanent full-time employees before Christmas 2023. Locals are highly desirable and drive-in drive-out options available.

“We have got the next intake coming so we are in a recruitment phase at the moment. There is plenty going on, it is really exciting,” mine general manager Dave O’Dwyer said at a press conference.

“We have got contractors coming in, we have got 110 employees onsite … [and] this is really exciting for the community, feeling the buzz in the street. We have got our town office open again so people can come and see the team, have a chat, look at the opportunities, and find out how they can work for us or supply to us.”

NHC previously confirmed preparation was underway for a train loadout facility, rail lines, roads, bridges, dams and other major infrastructure.

Construction is expected to take two years and those packages are worth about $198 million.

Clearing and topsoil removal began on 1 May 2023. Drill equipment has been mobilised to let production drilling start. Mobile equipment maintenance is also underway.

The $15M coal handling and preparation plan refurbishment is expected to wash first coal some time during the first quarter of fiscal 2024.

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