Bid for six exploration licences withdrawn
Prospective miners behind a fresh bid for exploration in the shire have withdrawn their applications.
Earlier this month, the Times revealed the Shire of AugustaMargaret River council’s opposition to the bids, covering six exploration licences across the region, including the Blackwood River and the Witchcliffe Eco-Village.
But amid fierce community backlash, proponent Peter Gianni declared he had withdrawn the lease applications on the mining tenements, which have existed in the region for several decades.
Former anti-coal activist Cath Miller broke the news after con- tacting Mr Gianni directly to express the region’s opposition to mining plans for coal, gold and mineral sands.
Ms Miller was a prominent campaigner in the No Coalition movement, rebuffing mining plans for the Osmington and Metricup areas.
In an email, Mr Gianni confirmed he was withdrawing the applications from WA’s Warden’s Court. “I was unaware of the huge impact this may have on yourself and others in this area and I wish to do the right thing and will withdraw my application E 70/5183 today,” he said.
Ms Miller said she believed all applications were now withdrawn, saving herself and dozens of residents from making personal deputations at the Warden’s Court, as occurred during the Osmington saga earlier this decade.
“The South West Capes is a tiny blip on the landmass of WA, is an internationally recognised biodiversity hotspot, and has good rains that make a whole range of agricultural activities possible,” she said. “Mining should be focused in areas where this is not the case.”
Ms Miller said the WA Government should enshrine a no-mining zone west of the Gladstones line, the geographical indicator for the Margaret River wine region.
The Shire of Augusta-Margaret River did not respond to inquiries.