The Queensland Land Court has recommended natural resources and mines minister Anthony Lynham grant Kevin’s Corner coal project in the Galilee Basin a mining lease and an environmental authority.
Kevin’s Corner, located around 50km north of Alpha in Queensalnd is owned by GVK Group subsidiary Hancock Galilee. It is expected to have an output of around 30 million tonnes of coal per annum over a 30 year mine life.
The Land Court decision comes after activist group Coast and Country Association of Queensland objected to the granting of the mining lease, arguing that the project did not show it will not have an adverse impact on groundwater, surface water and biodiversity.
However, member of the Land Court WL Cochrane recommended the state mines minster grant the mining lease as the the groundwater issues had already been addressed.
“I have concluded that concerns with respect to impact on the groundwater are appropriately dealt with and managed by the conditions imposed by both the state department of environment and heritage protection in the draft environmental authority and by the Federal Government approval granted pursuant to the Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act (EPBCA),” he said.
Queensland Resources Council chief executive Ian Macfarlane welcomed the decision, but highlighted his disappointment over the activist group’s objection.
“It is very disappointing to see green activists, yet again, attempting to derail a job creating mine after it had already passed through processes administered by democratically elected state and federal governments,” he said.
The mine is expected to generate around 2500 jobs during development, and once operational, provide around $168 million in royalties.