As part of the Territory Government’s development of Tennant Creek as a mining and gas services hub, works addressing safety and environmental issues around legacy mines are creating jobs and business opportunities in the region.
The NT Government supports the three-year program, which began in 2016. So far approximately $1.85 million has been spent on 18 projects, with work on 17 being awarded to NT businesses.
NT Minister for Primary Industry and Resources, Ken Vowles, was in Tennant Creek with Member for Barkly Gerry McCarthy to visit the former True Blue mine site, where remediation works have taken place.
“These projects are providing jobs for local contractors,” Mr Vowles said. “They are also providing opportunities for Aboriginal people, as the Legacy Mines Unit works with Traditional Owners on Aboriginal Sacred Sites.”
Funding for the projects comes from the Mining Remediation Fund, made up of the one per cent annual cash levy on security bonds held for mining activities in the Territory.
“We are turning liabilities in the form of abandoned open mine workings into opportunities and assets, with some sites possibly being developed as tourist attractions,” Mr Vowles said. “There is also scope to develop tourist trails through historic mining areas.”
Projects include weed management on mining tenements, mine safety works and dust monitoring programs.
“Tennant Creek company Remote Concrete NT filled in four open mine shafts, constructed a grate over another open mine shaft and installed signage at True Blue mine site,” Mr Vowles said. “The site now has the potential to be used for local business or tourism ventures.
“And Tangentyere Constructions has completed safety works at the Pioneer mine site in Hatches Creek. This site is within 100 metres of the tourist trail through the Davenport Ranges National Park.”
Mr McCarthy said some of the projects provide opportunities for Aboriginal people.
“The Julalikari Council Aboriginal Corporation carried out weed management around the former Eldorado mine site, which created training and employment for local people,” he said.
“These projects provide a great opportunity to address the issues of legacy mines while providing jobs and long-term beneficial land uses.”
Source: NT Government