Almost 100 submissions have been received as part of the South Australian Government’s public consultation on Iron Road Limited’s proposed Central Eyre Iron Project.
The submissions from a range of stakeholders including community members, businesses and local government were received during an extended consultation period which closed earlier this month.
The consultation related to both Iron Road’s Mining Lease Proposal for a magnetite mine and processing facility near Warramboo on the central Eyre Peninsula, and the Environmental Impact Statement for the associated infrastructure which includes a rail link from the proposed mine to a deep sea port at Cape Hardy.
Iron Road’s proposals comprise one of the largest mining and infrastructure projects to be considered by the State Government, with an extensive assessment required of its environmental, economic and social benefits and impacts for the Eyre Peninsula.
Three public meetings covering both the mine and infrastructure proposals were held in an “open house” format that ran for five hours each day in Port Neill, Cleve and Wudinna in December.
Planning Minister John Rau said Iron Road will be required to respond to any concerns or issues raised in the submissions lodged.
“As with any major development, Iron Road’s Central Eyre Iron Project presents a range of potential impacts and benefits for our State and local communities,” Mr Rau said.
“The public were given extra time to thoroughly consider all of the project details, attend three separate meetings on the Eyre Peninsula, lodge submissions and have their say.
“About half of the submissions received were submitted online through a dedicated website and relate to a broad range of aspects, detailing both concerns and support for the project.”
Mineral Resources and Energy Minister Tom Koutsantonis said the submissions will be provided to Iron Road and then uploaded to the State Government’s website www.ceipconsultation.sa.gov.au
“Unless for legal reasons a submission isn’t fit for publication, the South Australian community will be able to read online all the views submitted as part of this transparent assessment process,” Mr Koutsantonis said.
“The company’s responses will also be available to the public and uploaded on to the State Government website for viewing in due course.
“Our technical experts within Government will also be providing their input into the comprehensive assessment of the proposals for both the mine and infrastructure.”
The Central Eyre Iron Project comprises:
• An open-cut magnetite mine and processing plant near Warramboo.
• A 145-kilometre long rail line.
• A deep-water port facility at Cape Hardy near Port Neill.
• A water supply bore field and pipeline.
• Electricity transmission lines.
• An accommodation village located near Wudinna.
Based on Iron Road’s applications under the Mining Act, 1971 and Development Act, 1993, submissions received during the public consultation process and Iron Road’s subsequent responses, the State Government will then undertake a comprehensive assessment of the project.
This assessment will inform both the Minerals and Energy Minister (mining lease) and the Governor of South Australia (infrastructure) on whether or not to approve the project, and if approved, the terms and conditions that would need to be met by the company.
The potential impact of shipping movements on Spencer Gulf marine mammals will also be assessed by the Commonwealth Environment Minister under the provisions of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act.