Indian coal mining company Adani has temporarily stopped engineering work on its proposed A$16.5bn Carmichael coal mine.
Last week, four major engineering contractors were requested by Adani to halt work on projects that are around the Carmichael mine in central Queensland.
“For the past six to 12 months, Adani has maintained a level of investment, jobs and subcontractor engagement for its mine, rail and port projects in anticipation of finalising approvals and decisions. The project budget was based, understandably, on these anticipated approvals timelines and milestones,” a statement from the company said.
“As a result of changes to a range of approvals over that time, it’s necessary to synchronise our budget, project timelines and spending to meet those changes.”
Following media reports, Adani spokeswoman Kate Haddan was quoted by Reuters as saying: “This is only temporary.” Adding that the company looks to start mining in 2017.
The projects also include a joint venture rail line as well as the expansion of Abbot Point port.
According to sources, Adani suspended the work by WorleyParsons and Aecon, Aurecon and SMEC.
The company is said to be facing legal challenges from indigenous landholders, as well as conservation groups regarding the project due to its potential impact upon the Great Barrier Reef, groundwater at its site in addition to its carbon emissions.
In March, environmental group Coast and Country objected to the company’s project and claimed that it would endanger biodiversity in the region.
The group added saying that said that the Carmichael coal mine would endanger the climate, groundwater and the endangered black-throated finch.