The parent company of the New Acland Coal Mine says tentative dates for a hearing in November are a "nightmare scenario" for the mine's workforce.

The Land Court has indicated the re-hearing of New Acland Coal Mine's Stage 3 expansion will likely take place in November.

Queensland Land Court president Fleur Kingham outlined a series of draft directions at the end of today's hearing, after the High Court earlier this month referred the matter back to the Land Court for reconsideration.

In a statement, New Hope Group said it was clear the Oakey Coal Action Alliance, which is opposing the expansion of the New Acland Coal Mine, was "doing all it can to bring ongoing objections and delay the process which, for them, is tantamount to a win".

"While New Hope Group appreciates a level of certainty on a potential hearing

date, continued delaying tactics by the OCAA means there is still no certainty for the

workforce at New Acland," the company said.

 

 

"As has previously been stated, by October 2021 all available coal at the existing mine

will have been exhausted and operations will be forced to scale down to care,

maintenance and rehabilitation activities only.

"This is the nightmare scenario not just for our workforce but for the local community

and our suppliers.

"The only ones celebrating ongoing uncertainty about the project will be the handful of

objectors who have succeeded in hurling obstacles in the path of this project for the

past six years.

"NHG will consider future steps once final orders have been received."

The Darling Downs Environment Council's Paul King foreshadowed he would be asking for a declaration that the NAC's applications before the court were defective, meaning they would have to be made afresh.

If the court agrees to his application it would mean there would be a new objection period.

"People would be able to object to the proposal as it currently exists rather than as it existed six years ago," Mr King said.

Originally published as Acland facing 'nightmare scenario' as court action continues


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