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Preliminary works commence at South Marionoak

MMG has today commenced the next phase of site investigations necessary to determine the feasibility of a new tailings storage facility (TSF) at South Marionoak.

It comes after the Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment determined earlier this month the preliminary works are not a controlled action. This means MMG has permission to undertake the necessary works, including environmental surveys and geotechnical investigations, in line with the conditions set by the Department.

Rosebery mine’s General Manager Steve Scott advised the works will inform whether a TSF is viable at the proposed site, and the works do not include construction of a TSF.

“MMG has to conduct a lengthy analysis of the proposed TSF site located on our mining lease with a number of stages involved. All works to date at South Marionoak have been for the purpose of investigation, and the latest Commonwealth decision gives us the green light to move into the next phase of assessments.”

“A small crew of specialists, including an environmental scientist and certified surveyor, have entered the site on foot with handheld equipment to assess the environmental controls required, inspect the existing access tracks, and plan for upcoming geotechnical investigations.”

The site is being accessed via boat on the Pieman River due to unwarranted protest activity in the area blocking vehicle access for permitted works in MMG’s mining lease.

“These early investigations are critical to inform the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act (EPBC) referral and are also seasonally sensitive for the flora and fauna in the area. Certain surveys must be conducted either within or outside flowering and breeding seasons.”

“We respect the right to peaceful protest and for people to express their opinions, and we likewise expect people to allow the completion of our approved investigations.”

“Without additional capacity to safely store tailings, MMG will have no alternative but to ramp down operations and close the mine in coming years.”

Environmental controls

MMG will take several measures to avoid significant impacts on EPBC listed threatened species and communities as outlined by the Department. Some of these will include weed management, implementation of buffer zones, restricting the width of new access tracks, number of drill holes and a limited total area of clearance.

Measures to protect the Tasmanian Wedge-tailed Eagle include no impact within a 1 kilometre line of sight and a 500 metre buffer zone from any known and active eagle nest during breeding season.

Speed restrictions, pre-clearance protocols, and exclusion zones will also be in place to protect any known Tasmanian Devil dens.

Additional environmental controls and protections are listed in the EPBC referral decision http://epbcnotices.environment.gov.au/_entity/annotation/4361c4b5-686f-ec11-80d0-00505684c137/a71d58ad-4cba-48b6-8dab-f3091fc31cd5?t=1642717113508


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