Solar salt producer wears eco-credentials on sleeve
German salt giant K+S Salt has stressed its eco-credentials after a week-long trip around the Exmouth Gulf, where it is proposing to construct a new 3.5 million tonnes a year solar salt project.
Representatives from the company, including Australian managing director Gerrit Godecke, visited Onslow and Exmouth last week to hear views from both communities on its proposed Ashburton Salt project 40km south of Onslow.
Mr Godecke said the people of Exmouth and Onslow had been welcoming and informative.
“We want to engage with the local community early on, let everyone know what we intend to do, how the process looks and gain as much feedback as we can concerning things like environmental impact,” he said.
“We don’t believe we know everything from far away so we want that local feedback.”
Mr Godecke said the company had learnt some new things which would be incorporated into the project’s environmental analysis.
The project has been referred to the State’s Environmental Protection Authority.
Mr Godecke said the K+S project was taking a completely different approach to the failed Yannarie lease nearby.
“Ashburton salt is a completely different project with a much smaller footprint,” he said.
“Apart from the difference in sheer size there are many many differences in the technical side of the project.”
These include not using bitterns storage, minimising or avoiding dredging and increased buffers to the delicate coastline.
Mr Godecke said it was important for K+S Salt to be “good neighbours” to the communities it operated in.