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The proposed Drayton South open cut coal mine is one mine in the wrong place that has the potential to destroy an entire industry and the employees and communities that rely on it.


The proposal for a new open cut coal mine at Drayton South is 500 metres from the doorstep of two of our largest and international scale thoroughbred breeding operations, Coolmore Australia and Darley Australia.


It is directly across the road from where families live and raise their children on these farms.


Our economic experts advise us that the Drayton South open cut coal mine will result in a net economic loss of $457m to the NSW economy, strip $120m annually from the local economy and place at risk 640 jobs.


The independent Planning Assessment Commission has recommended that this mine not be approved.  But the decision has to go through two more hurdles – a Director Generals Report and another Planning Assessment Commission review and final decision.  Your support is needed to ensure that the independent Planning Assessment Commissions recommendation is upheld and our industry, jobs and futures our protected.


Write to the Premier, Ministers and your local member today

Make your voices heard so that we can protect the Hunter Valley, our industries and our futures.


Drayton South Independent Planning Assessment Commission


The independent Planning Assessment Commission:


  • agreed that the Coolmore and Darley studs are highly important to the equine Critical Industry Cluster and consequently the broader region, and should be protected from the impacts of mining;

  • found the proposed mine would threaten the studs’ reputation and brand;

  • was not convinced that the air quality impacts would be acceptable;

  • found that dust control would be a significant challenge;

  • concluded that the air quality impacts of the project are not considered acceptable;

  • found that the mine would impact on the water quality and quantity of both groundwater and surface water resources;

  • considered  that there is value in maintaining a wide range of industries within a diversified economy;

  • noted  that this one mine has the potential to severely impact on the studs, putting the equine industry at risk;

  • considered that the landscape of the studs and their surrounds warrants conservation and protection;

  • recommended that Drayton South open cut coal mine plan proposed for this site should not be approved.


Experts advising the independent Planning Assessment Commission found that:

  • the studs’ significance to the broader Critical Industry Cluster meant they should be afforded total protection from the impacts of mining;

  • Drayton South’s Environmental Assessment is lacking with respect to its assessment of potential impacts on Coolmore and (Darley) Woodlands horse studs and entirely deficient in its description and analysis of the equine CIC;

  • Thoroughbred horse studs of the nature and scale of Coolmore and Woodlands, and open cut coal mining as proposed by the Project are incompatible land uses.  These landuses cannot co-exist in close proximity to one another.

  • Coolmore and Darley studs should be provided absolute protection from impacts of open-cut mining as proposed by the Project in order to preserve the sustainability of the CIC.

  • An appropriate buffer distance between the Project and the Coolmore and Woodlands horse studs will be one that prevents and avoids all potential impacts.

  • Despite requirements of the Director General, assessment of the impacts on the CIC is largely absent.

  • The EA fails to adequately describe the CIC or the role of Coolmore and Woodlands in it.




NSW Mining and Petroleum Gateway Panel – Drayton  South Coal Project


In its advisory report to the NSW Government the Independent Mining and Petroleum Gateway Panel determined:

  • The potential impacts of the proposed mine on the CICs are significant because the potential impacts on Coolmore and Woodlands horse studs and Arrowfield Estate vineyard and winery are significant and these are core businesses within each CIC;

  • Open-cut coal mining as proposed at Drayton South and thoroughrbed horse studs of the nature and scale of Coolmore and Woodlands (Darley), and importance to the sustainability of the Upper Hunter equine CIC, are incompatible land uses that cannot co-exist in close proximity to each other.

  • Mitigation measures currently proposed by the proponent are unlikely to be adequately effective in controlling impacts on the CICs.

  • Even if unlikely to occur, the consequences to the CICs of these potential impacts are so great that, in the Panel’s opinion, these risks to the Upper Hunter Equine and Viticulture CICs should be avoided.














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