AusPac and IPC agree on Dartbrook underground modifications

AUSTRALIAN Pacific Coal has reached agreement with the New South Wales Independent Planning Commission over the modification of its application to operate its proposed Dartbrook underground project until December 5 2027.
AusPac and IPC agree on Dartbrook underground modifications AusPac and IPC agree on Dartbrook underground modifications AusPac and IPC agree on Dartbrook underground modifications AusPac and IPC agree on Dartbrook underground modifications AusPac and IPC agree on Dartbrook underground modifications

AusPac said it welcomed the agreement, which was a significant milestone for the restart of mining at Dartbrook.

After an extensive conciliation process in the NSW Land and Environment Court, the IPC has reached agreement with AusPac for the Dartbrook Coal Mine Modification 7 regarding amendments to the modification request and conditions of approval.

"The commission and applicant have reached agreement after consideration of the public submissions the commission received regarding the applicant's response to contentions in the proceedings," the IPC said.

"The applicant's response to contentions was published by the commission on its website and submissions accepted for more than four weeks."

The IPC said it was making public its signed agreement with the applicant to ensure interested individuals and groups were aware of the parties' position before the court made final orders on or after November 10.

"As the commission has already benefitted from the community's submissions on the applicant's response to contentions [as well as submissions received prior to its determination of Modification 7], the commission will not be accepting further submissions on the signed agreement," it said.

AusPac said it welcomed the agreement, which was a significant milestone for the restart of mining at Dartbrook.

"Once the agreement becomes effective the operation of the development consent for the Dartbrook coal mine will be extended until December 5 2027," it said.

"The board also continues to consider whether, in addition to appealing against the Modification 7 determination, a further modification application [Modification 8] should be lodged to seek further flexibility in the manner in which the Dartbrook underground coal mine can be restarted and operated."

In August 2019 AusPac received limited approval from the IPC for its application to modify the existing consent for the Dartbrook coal mine in order to restart underground mining.

The IPC determination rejected the AusPac application for a five-year extension to the current mining approvals through to December 2027.

"This extension is a key element in de-risking the restart of mining at Dartbrook," AusPac said.

In November 2019 AusPac resolved to lodge an appeal against the determination made in August 2019 by the IPC.