Maxwell coal project in NSW given the green light for development

Monica Gameng   |   January 10, 2021
Maxwell Project site (cr: Malabar Resources)

Hundreds of jobs in the mining and resources sectors are expected to be generated with the New South Wales Independent Planning Commission giving the green light to Malabar Resources for the development of the Maxwell underground coal project. 

The approval came after a comprehensive review by independent experts as well as an assessment by the State’s Department of Planning, Industry and Environment. 

As a result of the review, the Independent Planning Commission stated that the benefits that will flow from the project would be of public interest based on the Commission’s consideration of all project related issues, risks and potential impacts. 

“The Commission finds that, on balance, and when weighed against the relevant climate change policy framework, objects of the [Environmental Planning & Assessment] Act, [Ecologically Sustainable Development] principles and socio-economic benefits, the potential impacts associated with the project are manageable, and the risks of adverse impacts on the environment are low. 

“The likely benefits of the project warrant the conclusion that an appropriately conditioned approval is in the public interest,” the Independent Planning Commission said in a statement. 

Along with the project approval, the Commission has imposed 169 conditions to help minimise or avoid serious or irreversible damage as well as manage, minimise and avoid potential impacts on heritage and biodiversity in and around the project site. 

The development also underwent a period of community consultation and engagement which includes the public exhibition of the Environmental Impact Statement in 2019 and a public hearing on November 2020 facilitated by the Independent Planning Commission. 

“Today’s news is just the beginning of a much longer journey with our neighbours to ensure the project continues to meet the expectations of everyone in our community, many of whom we have been speaking with over the last eight years to get this project right. 

“The Maxwell Underground project represents immense potential for the communities of the Upper Hunter,” Malabar Resources Chairman Wayne Seabrook said in a statement last month. 

The $509 million Maxwell Underground Project is expected to deliver about 250 jobs during its construction and approximately 350 jobs once the mine is operational. The mine is also expected to generate up to $55 million in annual wages when operations begin. 

“The project will also support local businesses and suppliers over the next three decades, and provide a real boost to the local economy, particularly during this challenging period,” Mr Seabrook said. 

The Maxwell Underground Coal Project is located east-southeast of Denman and south-southwest of Muswellbrook in the Hunter Valley. 

Once up and running, the mine is aimed at producing high-quality coal that is 75 per cent capable of being utilised in steel making. 

Source: Malabar Resources (1, 2); New South Wales Independent Planning Commission; Australian Mining 

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Monica Gameng
As Felix's Marketing Assistant since 2015, Monica is responsible for researching and sharing new and progressing projects within the construction and mining sectors in Australia. It's no surprise that Monica has her finger on the pulse of Australian major projects given she has produced more than 1,000 posts. She truly is an industry expert.
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