A Bowen Basin mineral producer received the regulatory nod to proceed with two new coal developments in Queensland’s Central Highlands region.
The State Government recently approved Futura Resources’ Fairhill and Wilton coal projects, 55km northeast of Emerald.
The work involves strip mining a combined 3.2 million tonnes per annum of run-of-mine steelmaking coal using surface miners, excavators and tracked dozers.
Raw material will be processed at Sojitz Blue’s existing Gregory Crinum Coal Mine (332km west of Rockhampton) before being transported 400km via the Blackwater rail system to the Port of Gladstone for international export.
This will require the following:
- mine site infrastructure
- transportable ablution facilities
- water management infrastructure
- offices, ablutions and workshop facilities
- haul roads and site access road networks
- maintenance workshops and laydown areas
- ongoing formation of in pit and out of pit waste dumps
- warehouse facilities for mining and haulage contractors
- transportable administration office blocks for personnel
- power generators for workshop and administration facilities
- communications infrastructure including towers and cabling
- surface water and mine affected water management structures (dams).
Construction is expected to start sometime in early 2023, and production could begin within six months. Up to 130 “good regional” jobs are promised to be created throughout the projects’ initial 10-year lifespan. There is potential to extend the projects for another decade.
Sojitz Blue won the mining services and coal processing contract for technical development, operations and rehabilitation. This also includes washing and handling all run-of-mine coal.
“From Emerald to Gladstone regional communities will benefit from job opportunities, and the economic flow-on effects, of these projects,” State Resources Minister Scott Stewart said in a public statement.
“Our state is blessed with the world’s highest quality steelmaking coal and a highly skilled workforce.”