Iluka Resources is proposing to develop a new mineral sands project in south-western New South Wales.
The Balranald Mineral Sands Project includes construction, mining, primary processing and rehabilitation of two linear mineral sand deposits, known as the West Balranald and Nepean deposits located near the town of Balranald.
Iluka’s Environmental Impact Statement for the project is currently on display on the Department of Planning site. The public has until July 7 to make a submission.
The project is expected to have a life of 15 years including construction, mining, backfilling, rehabilitation and decommissioning.
Iluka said an economic assessment of the project showed it would have net social benefits to the region and NSW of $965Mand $720M in annual direct and indirect output or business turnover regionally.
The project would require a workforce of 209 for construction, and 550 once the site is operational.
Iluka said a noise assessment of the project shows that during adverse weather conditions for all assessment periods and all stages of the mine life, two assessment locations are predicted to experience noise levels above the project specific noise level.
Iluka intends to enter into an amenity agreement or acquire this property.
The company said potential sleep disturbance impacts from operational maximum noise level events have been assessed and are expected to satisfy the relevant criteria for all assessment locations.
Iluka says eleven native vegetation communities were identified within the project area with two additional vegetation types were created to recognise highly modified vegetation communities but none of the vegetation types within the disturbance area are listed as threatened ecological communities.
However the project was deemed to have significant impacts for six fauna species; the Grey crowned Babbler; Mallee fowl; Little Pied Bat; Jewelled Gecko; Mallee Worm lizard and Western Blue tongued Lizard.
Iluka said impacts will be compensated through a Biodiversity Offset Package. Preliminary calculations presented in the EIS indicate that in the order of 28,000ha of offsets would be required.