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    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    Premier & Treasurer
    The Honourable Peter Beattie

    Green Light for Pipeline to Boost Mining Development

    Premier & Treasurer
    The Honourable Peter Beattie

    Wednesday, December 21, 2005

    Green Light for Pipeline to Boost Mining Development

    Mining development in the Bowen Basin can look forward to a more secure future following finalisation by SunWater and Queensland miners on commercial arrangements to develop a water pipeline from the Burdekin Falls Dam to Moranbah.

    Premier Peter Beattie said today that construction of the 220 kilometre Burdekin-Moranbah Pipeline would start immediately, with all government approvals in hand and initial funding commitments in place with foundation users.

    Mr Beattie said Australian coal exports were expected to increase by 28% over the next five years, with much of this increase coming from expansion of mining in the Bowen Basin.

    "Development in the Bowen Basin is dependent on a reliable water supply for onsite handling and processing, dust suppression and other activities," Mr Beattie said.

    "With Eungella Dam, currently the main source of water supply for mining, at critical levels, and miners looking to expand their operations to take advantage of an export boom in coking coal, a secure and reliable water source is essential.

    "The Burdekin-Moranbah Pipeline will protect water supplies from another failed wet season in this region as well as allowing for industry expansion. "This project embraces our Smart State philosophy - industry working together to reach outcomes which are beneficial for the companies involved as well as the state.

    "The companies involved have worked in partnership to develop a solution to this problem and have committed the funding necessary to make it happen," Mr Beattie said.

    The six foundation users - BMA Coal, Macarthur Coal, Carborough Downs Coal, Isaac Plains Coal, Rio Tinto Coal Australia (Hail Creek Mine) and Millennium Coal - have underwritten the design, initial material procurement, and preliminary works, which will allow work to commence immediately.

    SunWater will construct the $270million pipeline, which is scheduled to be ready to transport 9,000 megalitres of water to customers by December 2006, increasing to its capacity of 16,600 megalitres by July 2007.

    In addition to the main pipeline, construction has commenced on a 45 kilometre eastern spur joining the existing Eungella pipeline through to Coppabella. A 71 kilometre southern extension is planned to further support mining operations in the Dysart region.

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