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The push to develop the Galilee Basin has racked up more points on the scoreboard, with the North Queensland Toyota Cowboys getting behind the cause.

The club has formally pledged its support for the immediate opening of the coal province, joining forces with Townsville Enterprise and other local business leaders.

Townsville Enterprise Chairman Kevin Gill welcomed the high-profile support.

“The Cowboys are North Queensland’s strongest and most recognised brand. To have their support, standing united with us on the immediate opening of the Galilee Basin, is a strong sign that this not about politics, this is about jobs for North Queensland,” he said.

Cowboys chief executive officer Jeff Reibel said that consultation with the club’s members and partners had been an important step in the process.

“North Queensland has a diverse economy. The agricultural, mining and tourism sectors are all of vital importance to the region and its economy, and the Galilee Basin development is not a simple issue,” he said.

“We recognise that the development is important for future jobs in our region, and also recognise that the interests of different sectors of the economy are not always in alignment.

“We consulted with our stakeholders, including our members and partners, to seek their views on the proposed development. Of those who responded, 89 per cent supported the Galilee Basin development.

“The Cowboys support jobs for North Queenslanders, and we pledge to support ventures that help support North Queensland’s future.”

Cowboys back coal jobs campaign
Whitehaven Coal has started a large core drilling program at its $1 billion Winchester South project, 30km south-east of Moranbah.

This will help establish the reserve at the metallurgical coal project and assist in the design of the CHPP and other infrastructure, the company said.

It is expecting the approvals process to take about two years.

Preparation of the EIS, an inaugural JORC reserve and other requirements for that process were underway, Whitehaven Coal managing director and chief executive officer Paul Flynn said in a presentation this week.

The company expects the development of the Winchester South project to cost up to $1 billion in capital expenditure, inclusive of the mining fleet.

It is expected to create 500 jobs during construction and 450 jobs when operating.

The Queensland Government last month announced that Winchester South would be declared a co-ordinated project, streamlining the approvals process.

At full capacity, the mine is targeting run-of-mine production of approximately 15Mtpa of coal. 

Drilling underway for $1b Whitehaven Coal project
A Mackay-based business is shaking up the standard approach to design with a new range of lighter, linerless excavator buckets.

Hulk developer Mainetec is among the finalists in the Out of the Box Award in this year’s Resource Industry Network Awards.

Innovation is the cornerstone the business is built on, according to executive general manager Vicky Bowden.

“Hulk is just one of a range of innovative products and solutions that we have developed over the last 10 years,” she said.

“We are constantly looking at ways to do things better and smarter to give us a point of difference and keep our business moving forward.

Mainetec has been working on the Hulk range for almost four years.

“The challenge was to rethink the current design and manufacturing processes that have been the standard for excavator buckets for the past 30-plus years, and to deliver a high-production bucket that would give our clients a cost-effective production unit that moves more material faster,” Ms Bowden said.

She said Hulk buckets were designed with specific shaped steel castings to eliminate the need for lamination of plates as per standard OEM excavator buckets.

These castings have allowed for a high material flow, reducing hang-up in the buckets by having radiused corners rather than the standard 90-degree corners.

“The structural integrity of the Hulk design is superior due to the use of the unique casting properties and shapes,” Ms Bowden said.
She said more product could be moved in less truck passes than with conventional, equivalent buckets, and that the bucket was safer, because it eliminated the risk presented by removing wear liners on rebuild.

Mainetec has started fabrication for Hulk buckets destined for the Pilbara mining region in WA and the Bowen Basin.

RIN Awards winners will be announced this Friday (May 17) at a gala dinner at the Mackay Entertainment and Convention Centre.

The 2019 finalists include:

Safety Foremost Award – QCCS, Walz Group, Riverside Marine (Rivtow)

Champion Culture Award – The Gardian Group, Mastermyne, QCCS

Connecting in the Community Award – CQ Field Mining Services, DGH Engineering, Bank of Queensland

Chasing Foreign Markets Award – Vayeron, Mainetec, TEAM Group

Out of the Box Award – Mainetec, East West Lighting, Polymathian

Standing out from the Crowd Award – TEAM Group, Get Real Workwear, G&S Engineering

Striving for Diversity Award – Mackay Conveyor Equipment, BHP Hay Point Coal Terminal, Mastermyne

Buckets of innovation from Mackay manufacturer

PPNQ Developments has revealed details of its planned $330 million redevelopment of the Paradise Palms golf course site at Kewarra Beach in Cairns.

The Palms will include a village hub, water park, retirement village, more than 30haof green space and 429 residential blocks.

A development application will be lodged next week.

PPNQ Developments managing director Darren Halpin said he was keen to share more detail on the masterplan with the community.

“After closing the golf course six weeks ago, it is timely and in the interest of goodwill and transparency, to provide an update of where we are at in the planning phase,” Mr Halpin said.

Mr Halpin said the overarching aim of the proposed master plan was to revitalise the site while providing the local community with economic and lifestyle opportunities as well as a greater appreciation for the surrounding environment.

Technical advisors from Brisbane-based urban design consultancy, Urbis, who have been engaged to produce the comprehensive master plan, will host a community drop-in session along with other specialist consultants .

It will be held this Thursday, May 16 from 4pm to 7pm at The Palms Clubhouse.

Paradise Palms development plans revealed
Queensland’s Coordinator-General has approved the proposed $1 billion Olive Downs metallurgical coal mine, 40km south-east of Moranbah.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk made the announcement in Parliament today.

“The mine is expected to create 1000 operational jobs and 500 jobs during construction,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

“The project will contribute an estimated $8 billion to the local economy and more than $10 billion to the Queensland economy.”

The Olive Downs project has an expected mine life of about 70 years.

It will produce up to 15 million tonnes of metallurgical coal per year for export via the Dalrymple Bay Coal Terminal near Mackay.

Member for Mackay and Assistant Minister for State Development Julieanne Gilbert said Pembroke had committed to recruiting locals and people from other regions who might like to move to local towns.

This was the first project that had completed a social impact assessment under the Strong and Sustainable Resource Communities Act as part of the environmental impact statement, she said.

Subject to Commonwealth Government approval, Pembroke Resources expects to commence construction in 2020.

State approval for $1b Moranbah coal mine

Resolute Mining’s plans to expand its Ravenswood gold operations have received a boost, with the State granting nine key mining leases.

The new leases include areas within the operational footprint of the proposed Buck Reef West open pit and nearby land required for infrastructure including roads, water management and noise bunding.

The company has pre-funded and commenced refurbishing and relocating the historic Ravenswood State School to make way for the $150 million expansion project.

The project has the potential to extend the life of the Ravenswood gold operation, 150km south-west of Townsville, by at least 14 years.

“These new mining leases support our plans to expand production from our Ravenswood gold mine and continue a strong partnership with the government and the local workforce and community that commenced in 2004,” Resolute managing director and chief executive officer John Welborn said.

“We continue to create value at Ravenswood and we expect the ongoing strategic review will now be able to incorporate expanded production rates as we prepare for an investment decision on the Ravenswood Expansion Project.

“Ravenswood’s future is increasingly secure as a successful large-scale, long-life open-pit gold mine that will provide local employment, regional economic stimulus, community benefits, revenue for the State Government, and benefits for Resolute shareholders.”

The company plans to continue underground mining activities at the Mt Wright underground mine at Ravenswood until late 2019, with processing augmented with low grade stockpiles pending the development of the REP.

A Final Investment Decision is targeted for the second half of 2019 following completion of the strategic review.

Leases pave way for gold expansion project