Respect for the environment is a core value for us. It’s non-negotiable.
Good environmental management involves us identifying and controlling our environmental risks across all phases of our business from exploration through to development, operation and closure.
Managing our effects
Land clearing is a necessary part of our development and operational activities. We aim to minimise our impacts on the landscape, ecosystems and heritage values. We undertake baseline studies and surveys to identify land values.
Where impacts to biodiversity values cannot be avoided or mitigated, we relocate species and/or implement biodiversity offset projects offsetting measures in accordance with management plans developed with expert input. Where cultural or historical heritage values are identified, we engage with local community representatives to determine the most appropriate management actions.
Our Focus on Biodiversity
In accordance with the conditions of our resource consent and access arrangements, we fund programmes on the Denniston Plateau and the Heaphy catchment area to manage biodiversity values and threats.
Our Denniston programme focuses on biodiversity threat management. This includes pest plant management, weed control, pest control and the monitoring of native animals, birds and plant species.
And our Heaphy programme covers a wide range of biodiversity management, including:
- biodiversity outcome monitoring
- inventory and survey of pest species
- pest management and result monitoring.
We are conscious of the increasing concerns of our local stakeholders and other local water users regarding ongoing availability of water, security of access and the potential for impacts on water supply. Nationally mining is a small water user but at a catchment scale, can be one of the largest.
We aim to continuously improve our management of water to achieve positive environmental, social and production outcomes.
We propose to increase monitoring of water use across our operations, bringing a renewed focus and proactive management of water systems and activities. This will actioned through updating site water management plans, water balance models and setting accountabilities for measuring the effectiveness of our water management controls.
Reducing acid and metalliferous drainage (AMD)
At some of our operations, the waste rock material (over burden that must be removed to access the coal) is naturally chemically reactive and has the potential to form acid and metalliferous drainage (AMD). This can negatively impact water quality and the success of land rehabilitation if not identified early and managed effectively.
Our site management plans focus on materials characterisation so we understand the handling and storage requirements based on pre-determined science.
Our aim is the limit environmental impact and minimise operating and closure costs. We do this by wherever possible reducing the amount of waste rock exposed within the mines. At some mines, we have historical legacies to manage associated with waste rock dumps, however more recent and future waste rock dumps have been designed at the outset to minimise AMD effects for mine closure.