Wandoan Coal Project
|This article is part of the CoalSwarm coverage of Australia and coal|
The Wandoan Coal Project is a proposed open cut thermal coal mine which would be located to the west and north-west of town of Wandoan in the Bowen Basin in Queensland. The proposed mine would be located within the mining lease application area, which covers approximately 32,000 hectares. According to the proponents, the mine would "have an expected life of more than 30 years" producing approximately 30 million tonnes run-of-mine coal a year. In its outline of the project Xstrata stated that the project could be expanded to 40 million tonnes a year "if market conditions change and warrant the installation and operation of a fourth coal preparation plant unit".
The Wandoan Coal Project is being developed by Xstrata Coal Queensland, a subsidiary of Xstrata Coal and part of global mining group Xstrata plc. The Wandoan project would be a joint venture comprising "Xstrata Coal Queensland (XCQ) (75% ownership), ICRA (Itochu) Pty Ltd (12.5% ownership) and Sumisho Coal Australia (12.5% ownership)."
The project proponents states that "XCQ is participating in a Joint Venture to investigate the construction of a new rail connection known as the Surat Basin Rail, between Wandoan and the existing Moura-Gladstone line at Banana. XCQ is also working closely with QR Network regarding upgrades to its existing connections from Moura to Gladstone, and is coordinating with potential new port developments at Wiggins Island and Balaclava Island. Together these developments comprise the Surat Basin Coal Value Chain, which would provide critical mass to open up the Surat Basin in Queensland for major investment and regional development." (The section of proposed railway line between Wandoan and the existing Moura-Gladstone line is sometimes referred to as the Southern Missing Link railway line.)
On May 4, 2011, Xstrata faced the Land Court of Queensland over the greenhouse impacts of the coal mine. Friends of the Earth lodged an objection with the Land Court over the carbon dioxide emissions from the mine. The trial will call a variety of experts to give evidence on the impacts that this mine will have on Queensland’s environment and the global climate. The Wandoan Coal Project’s estimated greenhouse gas emissions (0.08% of Australia's total GHG emissions) was outlined in both the project’s Environmental Impact Statement – released in December 2008 – and November 2009 supplementary EIS, but excluded emissions associated with the subsequent burning of the coal by third parties.
- Queensland Department of Employment, Economic Development and Innovation: http://www.deedi.qld.gov.au/cg/wandoan-coal-project.html
- Xstrata Coal Australia: http://www.wandoancoal.com.au/