After commencing the environmental assessment process in September 2013, the Minister for Environment approved the Blue Hills Mungada East Expansion Project by issuing Ministerial Statement 1071 (MS-1071) in late December 2017. SMC is well advanced with the work required to recommence mining operations at Blue Hills, which includes complying with the environment conditions set by the Minister for the Environment.
“SMC would like to thank all those who have supported the proposal to recommence mining at Blue Hills and we look forward to again having a significant presence in the local communities” Stuart Griffiths Executive General Manager.
The Ministerial Statement (MS-1071) has 9 conditions and 42 sub-conditions, many of which must be met prior to SMC commencing ground disturbance (i.e. implementing the proposal to recommence mining). These include multiple mining and environmental plans that require advice and approval by numerous government agencies including EPA Services within the Department of Water and Environmental Regulation (DWER), Parks and Wildlife Service within the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions (DBCA) and the Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety (DMIRS).
Throughout 2018, SMC has been working with DMIRS, DWER, DBCA and other government agencies to draft our mining and environmental plans, which has required numerous versions to work through each subsequent round of comments from each government agency. The plans requiring approval are as follows:
Work completed in 2018 includes:
SMC’s Blue Hills mine is located 84km east of Morawa and 225km east of Geraldton.
SMC’s Blue Hills (Mungada) Direct Shipping Iron Ore (DSO) Project commenced operations in April 2013 and went into care and maintenance in May 2015 due to delays in receiving environmental approval to mine an extension of the resource.
The project involves mining, crushing, screening and transport of iron ore from two open pits at Blue Hills. Ore is transported via rail and exported through the port of Geraldton, so far SMC has mined over 4Mt of high grade iron ore. The current DSO resource is 7Mt.
SMC has completed a 5 year rehabilitation project with Botanic Parks and Gardens Authority, Kings Park Science Division; to develop best practice mine rehabilitation procedures. With this Blue Hills extension proposal, SMC has committed to a further five year restoration project with the Australian Research Council to ensure world’s best practice mine site restoration is continued.
Article reproduced with permission from Kings Park and Botanic Garden. Previously published in “For People and Plants” – Friends of Kings Park Quarterly Magazine, issue 94.
Acacia woodmaniorum is regrowing, flowering and seeding
Read on to discover more about the jobs and social advantages provided by the proposed Blue Hills expansion project
direct and indirect jobs
in community funded projects
The Blue Hills Expansion Project will continue to bring a significant number of jobs and business opportunities to the Mid West Region; and
The future development of the Weld Range Project will bring very significant benefits to the Mid West and State in terms of jobs, contracting opportunities and royalties.