New guideline to improve mine water management
Released 25 Feb 2009
The Department of Water is inviting all stakeholders in the mining industry to make submissions on its Pilbara water in mining guideline – draft for public comment, to ensure the proposals will benefit all parties.
The department's Director of Water Use, Rob Hammond, said the proposals were aligned with mining approval processes administered by other government agencies and with the integrated project approvals system administered by the Office of Development Approvals Coordination.
Mr Hammond said the guideline sets out a five-stage process to develop an operating strategy for mine water management practices. The stages are:
- preliminary consultation
- scoping the water management task
- preparing and assessing a water management plan
- preparing and assessing an operating strategy
- construction and operation.
The guideline was developed in consultation with mining stakeholders, including two workshops.
"Mining projects in the Pilbara can have a significant impact on groundwater and surface water resources, particularly where mining occurs below the water table," Mr Hammond said.
"The new guideline provides mine developers with clarity in dealing with the complexities of water management and consulting with the department.
"Issues addressed in the guideline include legislative requirements, state-wide policies and water management objectives detailed in the Pilbara regional water plan."
The draft Pilbara water in mining guideline is available from the Department of Water's website at www.water.gov.au.
The comment period will close on Friday 29 May, 2009, following which the department may arrange workshops to discuss issues raised in submissions.
Contact: Dianne Dixon
Phone: (08) 6364 6983 / 0419 910 847