Big noise in the Hunter Valley

XSTRATA Coal’s Mangoola mine is creating unrest in the nearby village of Wybong while Coal & Allied’s Warkworth mine is raising concerns over noise levels, according to the latest compliance report from the New South Wales Department of Planning and Infrastructure.
Big noise in the Hunter Valley Big noise in the Hunter Valley Big noise in the Hunter Valley Big noise in the Hunter Valley Big noise in the Hunter Valley

A dragline at Rio Tinto's Mount Thorley Warkworth operation.

Lou Caruana

The department has completed its annual inspection of all Hunter Valley coal mines, which requires the mines to provide an annual environmental management report.

“The department has received a number of inquiries from the Wybong area regarding mining noise from the Mangoola mine. In cooler weather sound can travel more easily and mining noise may be heard over greater distances,” it said.

“The department’s compliance officers have visited a number of Wybong residents to explain Mangoola mine’s conditions of consent relating to noise.

“Residents have been advised that if they believe the noise levels exceed those allowed by the consent, they can request an independent review of noise levels, as per the conditions of consent.”

Long Point residents have raised concerns about mining noise following the relocation of active mining equipment at Coal & Allied’s Mt Thorley/Warkworth mine.

“The department has found that existing noise monitors can not accurately determine if noise levels comply with the development consent,” it said.

“To address this, Coal & Allied has hired an independent consultant to install a monitor over winter and will undertake monitoring at regular intervals, both at the minesite and other locations.

“Monthly monitoring results will be made available on the Coal & Allied website and the department will work with Coal & Allied on any actions required as a result of the monitoring results.”

In May the department inspected eight minesites to ensure the measures in the reports were being implemented.

It found a general need to improve oil containment around workshop buildings to prevent oil entering stormwater management systems and a need to improve ancillary water management structures.

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