A Chinese mining giant is being accused of underestimating the impact a proposed open cut mine

A grain silo in the Liverpool Plains painted with a sign that reads 'Farms not coal'.

A Chinese mining giant is being accused of underestimating the impact a proposed open cut mine will have on groundwater on the New South Wales Liverpool Plains.

Key points:

  • A study by the UNSW Water Research Laboratory into the environmental impact statement (EIS) issued by Shenhua Watermark Mine has found that modelling used by the mining company was flawed
  • The study found that the EIS relied upon incorrect data on the storage volume of groundwater aquifers, and that the capacity of these aquifers is a lot smaller
  • The research was funded by the Caroona Coal Action Group (CCAG), which is opposed to the project, but stakeholders claim it is independent because it was peer-reviewed

The University of New South Wales’ Water Research Laboratory conducted a study into the Shenhua Watermark Mine’s environmental impact statement (EIS), and in particular its findings around the project’s potential effect on water.

The research was commissioned by the Caroona Coal Action Group (CCAG), which is opposed to the project.

The study has found that the modelling used by the mining company was flawed, because it relied upon incorrect data on the storage volume of groundwater aquifers.

“The values used were implausibly high based on our research,” Ian Acworth, UNSW Emeritus Professor, said.

Read full story here: https://www.abc.net.au/news/rural/2019-05-01/shenhuas-watermark-coal-proposal-under-fire-for-flawed-eis/11062444

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