December 15, 2017
Moreton Resources expects to have a decision from the State Government on its proposed open-cut Kingaroy coal mine by next Christmas.
In a media statement released on Thursday night, Executive Chairman Jason Elks said the priority now was to develop a new Pre-Feasibility Study for the project as coal had doubled in market price since the initial study was released in 2015, and the coal resource estimate had increased 80 per cent.
An updated, “optimised” plan would also be developed for a 10Mt/year export mine, as well as an updated valuation.
This updated Net Present Value (ie. projected profitability of the mine) would be a “quantum shift” from previous figures, Mr Elks said.
Another priority would be submitting the Environmental Impact Statement for assessment by the Office of the Co-ordinator General.
“The company believe full assessment of the Mining Lease Application and the Environmental Impact Statement should be considered by government in the back end of calendar year 2018, with a potential decision prior to Christmas 2018,” Mr Elks said.
Moreton Resources will also submit a new JORC estimate of the coal resource to the ASX on Friday.
Previous JORC reports to the ASX covered Moreton’s MDL385 (the old Cougar Energy site) and EPC882 (the old Cockatoo Coal exploration permit area).
This latest JORC report solely covers the Mining Lease Application area for the proposed mine, ie. MLA 700015.
Moreton Resources’ says the new estimate is 517.5Mt of coal (134Mt measured, 383.5Mt indicated and 6.6Mt inferred), more than enough to cover the proposed 25-year lifespan of the mine.
Mr Elks said Moreton Resources’ focus would continue to be “proving beyond doubt, the significant positive impact on employment, economic and socially that this project will have upon the Wide Bay Region, but in particular the South Burnett”.
He said certainty for the mine would secure “hundreds of direct jobs and in total over 1000 new direct and indirect jobs in the South Burnett”.
“That influence is expected to generate from the South Burnett, throughout the Gympie Region and all the way to the Gladstone region, for what is seen as a significant stand along (sic) project, that also has considerable interlinkages as an enabler for other major infrastructure projects throughout Queensland,” Mr Elks said.