The Mid-Western Community Action Network (MWCAN) has called for a more wide-ranging study on the effects of mining proposals in the Mid-Western Region.
Council last week considered a draft consultancy brief for a study to be funded by the Department of Planning and Infrastructure, to look at the effects of mining on local and regional infrastructure in the Mudgee region.
The study will look at the how proposed mines will identify which additional services will be needed to cater for growth resulting from mining projects.
Speaking at council’s open day, MWCAN spokesman Chris Pavich said the study area should include the villages of Lue, Rylstone, Kandos, Charbon, Clandulla, Ilford and Bylong, all of which were already significantly affected by coal mining or were likely to be affected.
Mr Pavich said the study should also look the effects of limestone, rhyolite, dolomite, and magnetite mining in addition to coal mining. He also called for the effect on rail and air transport to be included in the brief as well as roads.
The study brief should include increased use of the airport, and the effect of increased use of the rail corridor on village such as Lue, Charbon and Kandos, he said.
Mr Pavich said expansion of mining would also have a significant impact on Rural Fire Service (RFS) recruitment in areas such as Wollar.
Although mines relied on the RFS to provide fire fighting services, the number of volunteers available was falling as permanent residents moved away from areas such as Wollar.
Mines’ demand for water was also likely to affect he entire region, he said.
“Libraries, sports, and children should all be mentioned in the consultancy brief,” he said.
“We also need to think about liveability in the region in 30 years time when the mines are done with us.”
Mr Pavich asked that the MWCAN, Mudgee Business Association, Kandos and Rylstone business groups, Mudgee District Environment Group, Running Street Water Users Association be included in consultation as part of the study.
A report to the Mid-Western Regional Council has also supported the inclusion of Gulgong, Rysltone and Kandos in the study.
Council deferred adoption of the consultancy brief to consider MWCAN’s comments
Source: Mudgee Guardian 20 Jun 2011