News Wrap

IN THIS morning’s News Wrap: Rio Tinto, NSW fast-tracked approval for Warkworth; AGL loses second outlet for treating Gloucester CSG waste water; and Rinehart reaches document access agreement with Wright Prospecting.

Lou Caruana

Rio Tinto, NSW fast-tracked approval for Warkworth coal mine

The Baird government worked “hand in glove” with Rio Tinto to accelerate a key environmental approval for a coal mine expansion in the Hunter Valley, emails obtained under freedom of information laws show, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.

The emails, sought by activist group Lock the Gate, reveal close co-ordination between the miner and government department in order to deliver the approval – in the form of the state's first certified biodiversity offset package – in time for Rio to use it to answer public criticism of the mine's expansion.

AGL loses second outlet for treating Gloucester CSG waste water

AGL’s coal seam gas operations in NSW have suffered a fresh setback with the processor of its waste water declining to take further shipments, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.

Worth Recycling based near Windsor has told Hawkesbury City Council it will not accept further CSG flowback water shipments, Peter Jackson, the council’s general manager said.

The decision leaves AGL without a destination for waste water if or when it is permitted to resume fraccing at its pilot CSG plant near Gloucester in the state’s mid-north.

Rinehart reaches document access agreement with Wright Prospecting

Warring mining empires Hancock Prospecting and Wright Prospecting have struck an agreement over access to joint venture documents in an 11th-hour deal that has resulted in the cancellation of a four-day trial, according to the Australian Financial Review.

The parties attended the Supreme Court in Perth on Monday, but entered into negotiations before opening arguments were heard. The trial has now been cancelled.

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