State Development boost for massive coal mine ‘twice the size of Adani’

A massive coal project producing up to 20 million tonnes a year for 35 years has been boosted by the State Government with the issuing of co-ordinated project status.

Jun 12, 2020, updated Jun 12, 2020
The farming and mining sectors are pitted against each other over planned legislation. (Photo: Array)

The farming and mining sectors are pitted against each other over planned legislation. (Photo: Array)

The Valeria project, near Moranbah, would be about double the size of Adani’s first stage of the Carmichael coal mine and could potentially outstrip the production at Goonyella, which was 17mt in 2018-19.

Glencore documents also state Valeria will be a mix of thermal and coking coal and its life of mine is 45 years but its initial application was 25 years.

Coal giant Glencore would develop the project from 2024 and still maintain its cap of 150 million tonnes of global coal production. The coal from Valeria would replace production from Glencore’s depleting mines as they come to the end of their mine lives, including Clermont.

The Valeria project area spans about 28,267 ha and will have a disturbance area of about 10,000 ha.

Glencore said the cost of the project would be between $1 billion to $1.5 billion and provide 1400 construction jobs and 950 operational jobs, many of which are likely to be local.

Queensland Treasurer Cameron Dick said the new mine had the potential to create hundreds of new jobs as Queensland recovered from the extraordinary shock of the global coronavirus pandemic.

“Projects like this are a vote of confidence in Queensland’s future as a diversified economy,” he said.

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“Coal mining has a long history in Queensland and will continue to be a major industry for many years to come.

“It’s so vital we keep things moving along in Queensland, despite the current restrictions, and this decision by the Coordinator-General means there will be a long pipeline of work ahead.”

Glencore has an option to develop a solar farm and lithium-ion battery storage facility on the site to supplement the diesel-powered generation as the primary source of site power.

The decision follows the environmental approval by state and federal governments for the Pembroke Resources’ Olive Downs coal mine in central Queensland which will produce about 15 million tonnes a year of coking coal.

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