Environmental Legacy Ownership
The historical environmental legacy of Mount Morgan is 100% owned by the Queensland Government through the Department of Natural Resources & Mines (DNRM), with the mining lease holder not responsible for existing environmental problems or the impact of past mining activities.
Management of the future mining activities and remediation of the site is governed by the Mount Morgan Phase 2 Agreement between the mining lease holder and the DNRM. The agreement sets out the rights and obligations regarding the establishment of tailings retreatment operations at Mount Morgan.
The Agreement requires the mining lease holder to:
- submit a detailed plan of operations before initiating mining activities;
- rehabilitate any disturbed mining areas by removing tailings from that area down to the natural ground; and
- manage any water in the mining areas.
The Agreement requires the DNRM to:
- maintain all ownership of the environmental legacy for all non-disturbed areas and areas mined down to natural ground level;
- maintain current environmental remediation activities;
- allow the mining lease holder access to the site to conduct feasibility and mine development activities;
- allow the mining lease holder to construct roads and infrastructure for operations; and
- allow the mining lease holder to place any new tailings into the Sandstone Gully area.
The Phase 2 Agreement therefore allows the mining lease holder to undertake mine development activities and mining operations without exposing itself to the significant historical environmental liabilities.
The Mount Morgan Mine is covered by 30 mining leases spanning 677.5 hectares. The leases are all current and valid until 31 August 2025. The mining leases will likely be combined into one lease once the project is approved for production.
Freehold title applies to all the operations areas of the mine site. Mount Morgan Limited converted land on the site to freehold title during the previous operations life of the mine. In addition the mining leases have remained current since mine closure.
Therefore native title has been extinguished over the project areas and the operational status of the mining leases means that the potential for review of native title does not arise.