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Glencore rejects QCoal allegations

Published by , Editorial Assistant
World Coal,

Glencore rejects allegations made by QCoal in relation to the legality of Newlands coal operations and has made the following statement.

Glencore has said it has been lawfully mining at Suttor Creek since 2004, using the same registered access land and haul road linking Suttor Creek to the Newlands complex.

“Our Newlands mine continues to make an important contribution to employment and the Queensland economy. The mine is a significant and longstanding operating mine which employs approximately 450 people and supports the township of Glenden. It last year generated royalties of approximately US$26 million for the Queensland Government and contributed about $250 million to the economy. Glencore has always supported a view that both our operation and QCoal’s Byerwen Project can successfully coexist and we believe that this is in the best interests of Queensland.

Our objection to the Byerwen mining lease application – via the Queensland Land Court – has always been focused on ensuring our continued access to the Newlands Suttor Creek haul road which is essential to our ongoing mining operations. Without appropriate conditions, the grant of Byerwen’s mining lease would enable it to prevent our ongoing use of the haul road.

On 7 December 2015, the Queensland Land Court judgment stated that there is:

“…no reason why the mining operations of Glencore and those proposed by Byerwen cannot live in harmony, and thus lead to the interests of the State in having both these projects proceed to the greatest extent that commercial realities allow, occur.”

The Land Court set out its reasoning as:

“…based on the evidence that Byerwen has no intention of mining what is referred to as East Pit 1 and East Pit 2, which lie to the east of the [Suttor Creek Haul Road] access, until about year 26 of operations, which equates about 27 years after the grant of MLA 70434. Assuming that MLA 70434 is granted in 2016, this means that mining operations will not commence to the east of the access until 2043.”

The Land Court also recommended that QCoal’s mining lease should include a special condition that specifically prevents the company from mining the Suttor Creek haul road before 1 January 2033. It is notable that QCoal does not plan to mine the land over which we currently haul coal for more than 25 years and its mining lease application has recently been amended to exclude surface rights over this area.

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