The Victorian Government is making sure the community has the opportunity to have their say on the Kalbar Fingerboards mineral sands project despite the restrictions imposed by the coronavirus pandemic.
Minister for Planning Richard Wynne required Kalbar Operations Pty Ltd to prepare an Environmental Effects Statement (EES) for the mineral mining facility proposed to be located 20km northwest of Bairnsdale.
The EES will be released this Thursday and will be publicly exhibited for 40 business days, 10 days more than usual. Community groups and residents can request their own copy in the absence of hard copy displays at public exhibition points.
The community and stakeholders will have the opportunity to make submissions on the EES as well as the works approval and draft planning scheme amendment which will also be exhibited ahead of a public inquiry.
The Government is providing $40,000 through the Community Advisor Grants program to support community involvement in the EES process for the Kalbar mine.
The proposed mining method involves open pit mining to extract approximately 170 million tonnes of ore over a projected mine life of 20 years.
The project area is approximately 1675 hectares and would establish two mining plants, a processing plant, water supply infrastructure, tailings storage and additional site facilities including an office, warehouse, workshop, loading facilities and fuel storage.
Along with the ongoing EES process, the project requires several other approvals before it can proceed including approvals under the EPBC Act, a mining licence and an approved work plan under the Mineral Resources (Sustainable Development) Act 1990.
The project also requires a works approval under the Environment Protection Act 1970 and a cultural Heritage Management Plan under the Aboriginal Heritage Act 2006 as well as approvals under the Water Act 1989 for extraction of surface and/or groundwater and permits to take native flora and fauna species listed under the Flora and Fauna Guarantee Act 1988.
The EES will be exhibited for public comment from Thursday 3 September 2020 at: engage.vic.gov.au
Quotes attributable to Minister for Planning Richard Wynne
“Despite the challenges the pandemic presents, it’s important the community can still access what they need to stay informed about the project and to make submissions.”
“For any major project proposed it’s crucial we assess its environmental effects to avoid or minimise impacts on the community or the environment.”
“Exhibition of this EES is an important step and we encourage community groups and residents to request their own copies of the EES and make their views known.”
Reviewed 31 August 2020