Our strategic partner
To maintain our environmental performance Austral have partnered with SGM Environmental Pty Limited (SGME).
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Environmental assurance and compliance
As part of our environmental management, Austral’s activities are governed by conditions detailed in mining approvals, lease conditions and licences set out by the Government.
Periodic voluntary independent environmental performance audits are conducted in line with our Environmental Authority.
Austral uses a uniform internal reporting system to report all environmental incidents, including breaches of any regulation or law. We assess each environmental incident against their actual and potential environmental consequence.
Environmental performance standards
We use five environmental performance standards that align with our Environmental Authority to maintain our environmental performance. The five key environmental performance standards of our business are:
- Emissions and energy
- Air quality
- Waste management
- Land and rehabilitation
Emissions and energy
Austral acknowledges that climate related risk has the potential to impact our business and communities.
We transparently report emissions and energy consumption performance. Each year we create and submit annual reports for the National Pollutant Inventory (NPi) and the National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting Act (NGER) to estimate greenhouse gas emissions and energy use.
We recognise the importance of air quality to our business and our communities and Austral believes in taking a proactive approach to air quality management. We periodically assess air quality to determine if dust is being emitted from facilities and to verify that air quality controls are
effective, and not having an adverse effect on human health or the environment. When required we implement controls for dust and monitor / inspect our facilities to make sure our controls are effective. As a minimum we comply with all relevant air quality requirements described in our Environmental Authority.
We recognise the importance of water to our business and our communities. Austral believes in taking a proactive approach to responsible water management. Our Water Management Plan ensures that the Mine effectively manages water, including process water, stormwater, discharges, and dewatering activities. As a minimum we comply with all relevant water licensing requirements set by Government by:
- Maintaining a surface and groundwater monitoring and reporting system
- Maintaining a water balance which reflects current operational requirements
- By monitoring water quality and quantity that evaluates surface and ground water resources, point source and non-point source discharges, and any receiving waters affected by a discharge
- By monitoring water quality trends at each monitoring location
We aim to reduce, recycle and reuse our resources from our site waste management practices. Austral uses government approved waste management service providers and tracking arrangements for the approved, safe disposal of hazardous material waste / dangerous goods. Generally, chemicals are consumed in the process circuit and used hydrocarbons are transferred off-site for recycling.
The Mine maintains a sewage treatment system and landfill that meets the minimum requirements described in our Environmental Authority.
Rehabilitation and closure
We acknowledge that our use of the land is a short-term land use and that we have responsibility to transform the land into a post-mining land use when we are finished. Austral has a closure plan in place which outlines the process to rehabilitate the Mine and performance criteria required before the mining lease can be handed back to the Government. We are currently in the process of transitioning to a Progressive Closure and Rehabilitation Plan to align with the Governments rehabilitation reforms.