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Mining to resume on Stockton ridgeline

27 February 2006

Mining to resume on Stockton ridgeline

Coal producer, Solid Energy, is set to resume mining operations on the southern part of the Mt Augustus ridgeline later this week.

However the company must first carry out surveys of the area to determine the presence of any powelliphanta snails and move them, if found, to an area it has set aside for the purpose.

The Ministers for Conservation and Energy today issued Solid Energy with a Wildlife Permit covering the areas to the south of Mt Augustus where mining operations were suspended on 17 February following the discovery of two Powelliphanta snails in areas where they had not previously been found.

Chief Executive Officer, Dr Don Elder, says: “We’re pleased that we can now get our staff and contractors back to work in this area. Obviously we are hopeful that mining can resume soon, but it may be some days before we can carry out the work needed under the permit conditions to identify and move any snails in this area. We hope to be able to meet contracted customer orders that have been under threat for the past week.

“We are working with the Department of Conservation to provide all the information needed for Ministers to make a decision as soon as possible as we need to access this area within weeks to meet future contracted orders.”

ENDS

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