Hume coal project

From Global Energy Monitor
This article is part of the Global Coal Mine Tracker, a project of Global Energy Monitor.
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The Hume coal project is a proposed underground coking coal mine, pursued by Hume Coal. If it were to commence it would be located closes to the villages of Berrima and Medway in the Southern Highlands of New South Wales, Australia.[1]

The proposed mine would operate for 23 years.[2]

Location

The undated image below shows the exact location of the proposed mine.[3]

Loading map...

Coal Mine Background

It is expected that a decision on the Hume Coal project will be made by mid-2020. As of November 2019 the Government awaits a response from Hume Coal to the queries raised by the Independent Planning Commission. The timing of Hume Coal's response is not fixed.[4]

The NSW Department of Planning and Environment received almost 13,000 submissions to the mine application process, the vast majority of which objected to the mine on environmental grounds.

A NSW Government department has raised grave fears about the plans for this mine, predicting groundwater impacts that are unparalleled in the state. "The department considers there is currently considerable scientific uncertainty about the level of environmental damage to both groundwater and surface water resources," the statement read.[5]

Opposition

Battle for Berrima is a community group opposed to the mine. On its website it says, "We are a community united against the irreversible impacts of large scale coal mining and exploration, as we demonstrate in peaceful and democratic means."[6]

According to the Guardian newspaper in 2017, "The community is almost wholly opposed to the mine, according to surveys of locals who fear contamination of the region’s pristine aquifers, noise from increased train and truck movements, particle pollution from the coal stockpiles, and the impact on towns such as historic Berrima, one of Australia’s best-preserved examples of a Georgian village.

The chief concern, however, is the loss of bore water for the region’s farmers and landholders.

The coal is to be extracted from shallow deposits, which will cause groundwater to fill the voids and cause the drawdown of a significant number of bores. Locals were told on Wednesday [26 April 2017] it could take as long as 73 years for the full recovery of the groundwater.

The company’s environmental impact statement, released last month [March 2017], revealed the mine would cause 93 groundwater bores in the region to drop by anywhere between two and 80 metres.

Seventy-one landholders will be affected."[7]

Project Details

  • Sponsor: Hume Coal is a subsidiary of POSCO Australia[1]
  • Parent Company: POSCO[1]
  • Location: Close to the villages of Berrima and Medway, Southern Highlands of New South Wales[1]
  • GPS Coordinates: -34.540811, 150.284465 (exact)[3]
  • Status: Proposed[1]
  • Production Capacity: 3.5 mtpa[8]
  • Total Resource:
  • Mineable Reserves: 50 million tonnes[9]
  • Coal type: Coking coal[1]
  • Mine Size: 5,051 hectares[10]
  • Mine Type: Underground, first-workings method[1]
  • Start Year:
  • Source of Financing:

Articles and resources

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 Hume Coal, "Project Overview", Hume Coal website, accessed 4 December 2019.
  2. Hume Coal, "Public Exhibition for Hume Coal Project to Begin Friday (31 March)", Hume Coal website, 10 April 2017.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Hume Coal, "Project Map", Hume Coal website, accessed 4 December 2019.
  4. Battle for Berrima, "Meeting with the Minister for Planning and Public Spaces", Battle for Berrima website, 19 November 2019.
  5. Gavin Cotte and Nick Mclaren, "Hume Coal mine gets damning assessment from NSW Government department over groundwater fears", ABC News, 12 December 2018.
  6. Battle for Berrima, "Meeting our community", Battle for Berrima website, accessed 4 December 2019.
  7. Christopher Knaus, "Hume Coal mine would threaten water and net just $6m in royalties a year for NSW", Guardian, 27 April 2017.
  8. New South Wales Government, "Hume Coal Project and Berrima Rail Project", page iii, State of NSW through its Department of Planning and Environment, December 2018.
  9. New South Wales Government, "Hume Coal Project and Berrima Rail Project", page 7, State of NSW through its Department of Planning and Environment, December 2018.
  10. New South Wales Government, "Hume Coal Project and Berrima Rail Project", page 8, State of NSW through its Department of Planning and Environment, December 2018.

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