Land released for exploration in Bowen Basin

The Queensland Government has opened more than 270sqkm of land for exploration in the Bowen Basin, set to deliver resources opportunities in the state.

Natural resources and mines minister Anthony Lynham announced the tenders for four blocks in the Basin – the first land release in the state’s coal country in four years.

The area is surrounded by existing coal mines, from Middlemount in the north to Cook and Blackwater in the south.

It is also serviced by Aurizon’s Goonyella and Blackwater coal rail networks, providing access to the Hay Point and Dalrymple Bay as well as the Port of Gladstone coal terminals.

Lynham said resources developments that deliver jobs and investment to the state begin with exploration.

“This land release is a significant opportunity for explorers to gain access to land with the potential for thermal and metallurgical coal in a world-leading production region,” he said.

The land release was foreshadowed in Queensland’s first Annual Exploration Program, released last year, which Lynham said provided long term planning certainty for explorers as well as early advice to traditional owners, councils and land holders.

“Queensland is the world’s largest global exporter of metallurgical coal, shipping more than 162 million tonnes last year worth an estimated $17 billion, with continued high demand for our thermal coal,” Lynham added.

Tenders close August 24.