The Department of Planning and Environment says Peabody Energy can go ahead with the expansion of its Wambo coal mine.
The approval means extra underground coal deposits near the south east corner of Wambo can be mined, securing the ongoing employment 227 workers.
“We’ve made changes to the proposal and applied tough rules to control the impact of subsidence on groundwater and the environment,” a Department spokesperson said.
“One of the main changes we’ve imposed reduces the size of the new underground mining area by almost 250 metres, so it avoids going underneath Wambo Creek channel.
“While this the expansion means less coal can be mined than originally proposed, we believe it is the right trade-off to properly manage subsidence risk.”
The Department said that without the approval, jobs at the site would have been lost.
It said the expansion would not alter the existing mining method, production rates, or the size of the surface mining area.
The spokesperson said the mine will put a monitoring regime in place so it can demonstrate that it is meeting the approval conditions imposed.
“The Department’s Compliance team will work closely with the mine and local community to make sure the rules are being followed,” the spokesperson said.