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Catherine Hill Bay mine rehabilitation achieves residential land use

Mine Rehabilitation & Closure / Mining & Resources

Catherine Hill Bay mine rehabilitation achieves residential land use

In this article:

  • Mining commenced at Catherine Hill Bay in 1873 and continued until 2002
  • The site has been progressively rehabilitated in accordance with the obligations set out in the approved closure plan, achieving residential land use

 

Overview

The NSW Resources Regulator is a stand-alone regulator within Regional NSW and is responsible for compliance and enforcement activities across the mining and exploration industry. The Regulator undertakes risk-based compliance and enforcement activities in relation to obligations under the Mining Act 1992. This includes:

  • conducting assessments and compliance activities to ensure the rehabilitation of mines is undertaken in accordance with the conditions of mining leases and the requirements of the Mining Act 1992
  • ensuring that rehabilitation security deposits held by the department cover the full costs in undertaking rehabilitation in the event of default by the mining company

 

The mine

Catherine Hill Bay is about 30 kilometres south of Newcastle, NSW. Mining commenced in 1873 and continued until 2002, once operations ceased, a large part of the land, including the site, was sold to Catherine Hill Bay Developments Pty Ltd (now known as Coastal Hamlets Pty Ltd).

In 2011, development consent was approved by the Minister for Planning and Infrastructure over part of the former mining areas at Catherine Hill Bay. The approved development comprises a 72 hectare residential subdivision of about 540 lots. The domain associated with the former mining operations, and where rehabilitated has now been completed, comprises around 6 hectares of a former coal stockpile area within this approved residential development.

 

The required rehabilitation outcomes

The site has been progressively rehabilitated in accordance with the obligations set out in the approved closure plan. The closure plan requires the title holder to achieve the approved rehabilitation objectives, rehabilitation completion criteria and final landform. This includes establishing a safe, stable and non-polluting landform to support the approved residential subdivision.

The required rehabilitated outcomes for the site are detailed in the Catherine Hill Bay Coal Preparation and Coal Stockpile Areas mine closure plan approved by the department in June, 2015.

Environmental obligations software - Mine closure planning software - Environmental management software - Rehabilitation compliance software - Mine rehabilitation software - Environmental monitoring software - Environmental management software - Environmental data management software - DecipherGreen
Mine closure domains associated with the former Catherine Hill Bay Coal Preparation Plant
  • The 6 hectare site is known as Domain 5A – Snake Gully
  • Progressive rehabilitation is continuing over the remaining domains under the oversight of the Regulator

 

Rehabilitation progress

The progress of mine rehabilitation has been in accordance with the measures outlined in the approved closure plan:

  • Completion of site contamination and other technical investigations to progress mine rehabilitation closure (including geotechnical and contamination assessments)
  • Stakeholder consultation
  • Decommissioning and remove of infrastructure
  • Implementation of a remedial action plan
  • Recovery of fine coal material from the stockpile areas
  • Completion of earthworks to reshape the site, to ensure it is in a safe and stable condition
  • Erosion controls, re-vegetation and weed management in preparation for future residential development

Environmental obligations software - Mine closure planning software - Environmental management software - Rehabilitation compliance software - Mine rehabilitation software - Environmental monitoring software - Environmental management software - Environmental data management software - DecipherGreen

Environmental obligations software - Mine closure planning software - Environmental management software - Rehabilitation compliance software - Mine rehabilitation software - Environmental monitoring software - Environmental management software - Environmental data management software - DecipherGreen

Environmental obligations software - Mine closure planning software - Environmental management software - Rehabilitation compliance software - Mine rehabilitation software - Environmental monitoring software - Environmental management software - Environmental data management software - DecipherGreen

 

Rehabilitation completion

In October 2019, Great Southern Energy lodged an application with the Regulator to obtain formal sign-off on the completed rehabilitation works. As part of the application, evidence was provided including contamination remediation reports and as-constructed drawings to demonstrate the rehabilitation was completed.

The Regulator carried out an assessment and determined that the rehabilitation obligations were fulfilled to the requisite standard in accordance with the approved closure plan and development consent.

 

How to drive progressive rehabilitation and closure

 

Originally published by NSW Resources Regulator.


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