09 July, 2014

SUBMISSION as an Objection – Airly Colliery DA 162/91 Modification 3

SUBMISSION as an Objection – Airly Colliery DA 162/91 Modification 3

Public submissions close Wednesday July 9th.  There are several ways of making a submission, they are
  • Post or express post your written letter,  (if not received by the due date will not be counted)
  • click here to go to the departments web site and fill in the online submission letter or 
address to  -
Mining and Industries Projects
NSW Department of Planning & Infrastructure
GPO Box 39 SYDNEY NSW 2001

Mark your letter  “Submission as an Objection -  Airly Colliery DA 162/91 Modification 3
  Existing Consent Conditions are Inappropriate”

(A phone contact in the department is Thomas Watt  on 9228 6587. confirm submission is received either by post or email).

The Proposal
The proposed Airly Colliery modification 3 proposal seeks to extend its old, 1991, development consent to October 2015 (an extra 12 months). 
Centennial Coal claims it needs this modification to allow it to continue mining while it prepares a big mine extension project (SSD 12_5581).

Notes for consideration in your submission.

Introduce yourself
Mention whether a local resident or an owner of a property
Who are you and what you do and what do you like most about the area and in particular Mt Airly historic village. See Capertee Valley photo blog and Capertee Valley Grand Canyon face Book page.

Mugii Murum–ban State Conservation Area is a fabulous walk that is accessible to almost everyone, nature, views and historic Heritage in one location.  This asset is of huge value to Local, Regional, State National and International visitors.

Access and safety visiting Mt Airly area in the Capertee Valley should not be compromised by mine subsidence. World heritage Advisory Committee recommendation that Airly-Genowlan mesa should be added to the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area.
Mining Method - full extraction of coal outside of environmental protection zones.
This modification 3 proposal would allow more intensive coal mining that causes 1.8 metres of vertical subsidence.
If they continue to operate under the existing out-dated 1991 conditions they can legally drop the ground level by 1.8 meters, which will cause cliff collapses and subsidence.

Such mining will destroy this spectacular mesa with its thousands of pagodas, dramatic cliffs and the "New Hartley" oil shale ruins.
Access will be blocked for ever for safety reasons, and natural and scenic values lost for all time.

Earlier negotiations regarding the creation of the Mugii Murum-ban State Conservation Area, Centennial told the Colo Committee and the Colong & Wilderness Foundation that they only planned to remove half of the coal to ensure support for the surface. This would ensure that the maximum vertical subsidence would be 125mm (5 inches).

It appears that there will be mining under Airly Village with an anticipated subsidence of 0.5 metres.
This is a fragile area and should be protected for heritage reasons.  There has been no assessment of heritage issues.
Water surface and ground water, aquifers. CVA Inc is relying on a fundraiser in September
To assist employing a consultant
Water impacts are critical as they will affect the World Heritage Area, agriculture and tourism

Agriculture is not mentioned in Airly Coals application.
There is still the serious risk that bores and creeks (Gap, Genowlan and Emu) and the Capertee River will be affected by mining and farming will run short of water.

Environmental assessment
The environmental assessment does not mention the oil shale ruins, or that mine water discharges could put Airly Creek which flows into the World Heritage listed Gardens of Stone National Park at risk. Other creeks affected will be Gap Ck, Genowlan Ck and Emu Ck which feed the Capertee River.

If the water fails then unique flora and fauna will be affected and our own personal enjoyment and tourism will be seriously affected.  

I’m concerned that the coal heaps are NOW visible from Glen Davis Road and from Pearsons Lookout, in contravention of an agreement to screen them with trees. The heaps should be covered to control acid-run off that will affect local waterways.

Capertee Valley has experienced dry times and water is a big issue and the colliery waste water should not be allowed to pollute local waterways which run into the Gardens of Stone National Park, and into Capertee Valley.

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