Midwest Corporation Ltd's long-running battle to transfer its iron ore transport from road to rail has taken a step closer to resolution after the Environmental Protection Authority recommended that the project be approved.
Midwest Corporation Ltd's long-running battle to transfer its iron ore haulage from road to rail has taken a step closer to resolution after the Environmental Protection Authority recommended that the project be approved.
Iron ore from Midwest's mining operation is currently transported by road to the port at Geraldton but the state government has told the company it must transfer the haulage to rail.
The company has endeavoured to proceed with the transfer but has been delayed by regulatory approvals.
The haulage of its ore is separate from its plans to build a much larger rail link to a new port at Oakajee, north of Geraldton.
An EPA announcement is pasted below:
EPA Bulletin 1267 - Tilley Siding Morawa.
In their recommendations to Environment Minister David Templeman the Environmental Protection Authority has given Midwest Corporation Limited's proposal, to build Tilley Siding on the rail line two kilometres north of Morawa to load iron ore for export through Geraldton Port, an environmental tick. An Assessment on Referral Information (ARI) level of assessment has also been set.
EPA Chairman Barry Carbon said there had been an issue of potential noise and dust impacts on a nearby farm but the company had arranged for the occupants to move.
"Recommendations were made to control the environmental impacts of dust and noise as effective dust and noise management will still be required to avoid loss of amenity at Morawa," Mr Carbon said.
Noise at Tilley Siding would be generated by the road trains arriving and dumping iron ore (1 every 30 minutes 24 hours a day), front end loaders handling the ore, and the arrival, idling and loading of trains.
"The proponent's Noise Management Plan specifies that night-time loading operations will not take place until noise monitoring has confirmed that night-time loading could be carried out without breaching the noise regulations," Mr Carbon said.
"The EPA expects the proponent to ensure that the proposal complies with the Western Australian Noise Regulations."
The ARI level of assessment and the EPA's report (available at www.epa.wa.gov.au) are subject to appeal until close of business 5 November 2007. The ARI document is available at www.midwestcorp.com.au. Appeals will be considered by the Independent Appeals Convenor (9221 8711).
The final decision will be made by the Minister for the Environment.