Council welcomes Olive Downs announcement

Isaac Regional Council has welcomed an announcement that the region’s Olive Downs mine project will be subject to the provisions of Queensland’s Strong and Sustainable Resource Communities Act.

Mayor Anne Baker said the $1 billion Olive Downs project, being developed by Pembroke Resources, would eventually become one of the world’s largest metallurgical coal mines.

“The workforce management provisions of the Act, which prohibit the employment of a 100% fly-in, fly-out (FIFO) workforce, are just one element of this legislation, which Council successfully lobbied long and hard for,” she said.

“The provisions of the Act also require the potential social and economic impacts of a major project on nearby local communities – those within a 125km radius – to be appropriately considered and addressed. For the Olive Downs project those nearby communities in Isaac region include: Moranbah, Dysart, Clermont, Coppabella, Glenden, Middlemount and Nebo.

“At Council’s request, the Isaac coastal communities of Carmila and St Lawrence were also included as nearby communities to Olive Downs under the Act, in addition to the inclusion of Middlemount relative to the Cook Colliery mine near Blackwater.”

Mayor Baker said Council was committed to ensuring the communities which bear the impacts of significant resources development also benefitted from a genuine economic and social dividend.

“Council is still awaiting a response from the Office of the Coordinator-General in relation to our request that Clermont and neighbouring areas be considered for inclusion as nearby communities to the Carmichael Mine under the provisions of the Act,” she said.

“Whilst Clermont is the closest population to the Carmichael Mine site, it is just outside the 125km radius to automatically qualify as a ‘nearby community’ and Council has advocated for the use of discretionary powers under the Act to effect this change.

“Council has received direct undertakings from Adani that there will be employment and business opportunities for Clermont-based workers and service providers at the Carmichael Mine, but we want to see this formalised by a declaration under the Act. Council and the community of Clermont expect no less given the unwavering support shown for the Carmichael Mine by local residents.”

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