Residents in the small Victorian town of Corryong have been told more than 185 jobs will be on offer if Dart Mining’s Mount Unicorn project goes ahead.
More than 100 local residents attended a meeting in the town on Wednesday for an update on the progress of Dart Mining’s proposed molybdenum, copper and silver mine.
Dart Mining managing director Lindsay Ward said if the project went ahead a large number of local jobs would be created, Border Mail reported.
“If the community supports mining activities then it will be of great benefit to them,” he said.
Dart Mining are proposing to start construction of the mine in mid-2015, with first production slated for early 2017.
The company said 100 workers would be needed for the construction phase, with 85 workers need when the mine begins operating, stating that no FIFO workers would be employed at the project.
Ward addressed the concerns of residents and said the environmental approvals process, which would involve numerous studies, would determine the impact mining may have on the community in the Upper Murray.
“It’s too early to tell what the environmental impacts will be and answer many of the questions residents have,” Ward said.
“We see community consultation to be important in the early stages of a project because it is far better to have an informed community than one that relies on rumour.”
Concerns from the public revolve around the management of tailings.
“People wanted to understand more about how we’d manage the tailings but we need to do further studies on that,” Ward said.
“There is also a lot of water involved in mining and people want to know where it will be coming from and how much we’ll need.”
Ward said the company was also conducting smaller focus group meetings with residents from the Biggara and Bunroy valley.
To be the first molybdenum mine in Australia, Mt Unicorn has surface outcrops and a low strip ratio, resulting in minimal wastage.
Molybdenum is used in steel manufacturing, paints, plastics, catalysts and in solar panels.
The project remains at an early stage of the planning and assessment project, however the company says there is sufficient data to allow for an advanced pre-feasibility study.
In a statement today Dart announced that it has officially commenced the environmental approvals process for the mine, with the submission of a formal referral to the Victorian Minister for Planning.
The Minister has 20 business days to respond on whether an Environmental Effects Statement is required for the project.