See the west coverage here.
In short “With a stroke of a pen, Water Minister Graham Jacobs can take groundwater access from 20 Mid-West farmers and their future generations and hand it to a mining company for nothing.
He can do this because the Department of Water policy on accessing water rights in WA is on a first-in, first-served basis.
Karara Mining has applied to pump big amounts of drinkable water 180km from the Parmelia Leederville aquifer in Mingenew, 380km north of Perth.”
The Karara mine is on Banded Ironstone Formations, a landform that is home to unique and restricted biodiversity in WA’s midwest region. Because of mining interests, none of the banded ironstones are protected. See a short video on the Banded Ironstones here.
The Karara mining project includes a hematite mine on nearby Mungada Ridge that has been recommended as a nature reserve and where mining was approved against the advice of the Government’s environmental watchdog, the EPA. A previous blog post of Karara is here.
5.3gL of water is a lot at a time when wheat belt towns, and Perth’s dams, are drying. It is also concerning that sourcing the water hasn’t been considered as part of the Environmental Impact Study on the project.