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Local jobs loom as Colton gains coal mine leases

Anglo American Rumoured to Sell More Queensland Coal Mines

The proposed $300 million Colton Coal mine near Maryborough, and up to 120 new long-term jobs, are rolling up to the start line.

Natural Resources and Mines Minister Dr Anthony Lynham today announced approval of three mining leases for  the New Hope Group’s open cut coking coal project 10 km  north-east of Maryborough.

“New Hope has the major approvals it requires to move ahead with this project and create up to 120 direct full-time construction jobs and up to 120 ongoing production jobs for the Fraser Coast region,” Dr Lynham said.

“Importantly, that workforce will be sourced locally and the project will provide business opportunities and inject revenue into the local economy from locally-purchased goods and services.

“The project has been through a rigorous assessment process, including public objections and Land Court hearings.

“The mine has strict conditions governing water releases to protect the Mary River catchment, and to limit noise and dust.”

The mine is expected to produce half a million tonnes of high grade coking coal per year, to be transported 270km by rail to Wiggins Island Coal Export Terminal at Gladstone.

The project will include a coal handling and preparation plant, workshops, offices, a haul road  and have  a production life of eight to 10 year.

Dr Lynham said New Hope had to meet strict environmental, financial and technical capability and public interest requirements, and address native title issues with traditional owners, to be granted its leases.

“The company now has to provide a plan of operations and financial assurance to the Department of Environment and Heritage Protection for work to start on site,” he said.

New Hope already operates two open cut thermal coal mines in south east Queensland – New Acland, north of Oakey on the Darling Downs, and Jeebropilly near Ipswich – as well as a joint venture, Bengalla, in New South Wales’ Hunter Valley.

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