At the height of the spruik ... Bryan Green, then Deputy Premier; now Opposition Leader, and Shree’s Sanjay Loyalka ...
Save the Tarkine has received correspondence from the federal Environment Department confirming that Shree Minerals is subject to ongoing investigations relating to contravention of environmental permits at the Nelson Bay River mine in the Tarkine.
The contravention relates to the quantity and storage of acid producing waste rock, after Shree Minerals confirmed that it would produce twenty times as much acid producing waste rock as disclosed in it’s assessment documents.
While Shree Minerals sought and was granted a state permit amendment, they failed to notify the federal Environment Department who have responsibility for assessing impacts on threatened species. As a result they acted outside the approved environmental conditions or their permit for several months.
The increase to the quantity of acid producing waste rock and it’s storage above ground have the potential to impact on the endangered Australian Grayling which uses the Nelson Bay River, and up to six threatened and endangered orchid species that are susceptible to changes in groundwater.
Save the Tarkine notified the Environment Department’s Compliance and Enforcement Branch in May.
“This cowboy behaviour by Shree Minerals shows why they never should have been trusted with a permit in the first place”, said Save the Tarkine Campaign Coordinator, Scott Jordan.
“Shree Minerals and it’s directors have history for failing to comply with the rules, and a place like the Tarkine should never be risked to the likes of Shree Minerals.”
“We call on Minister Hunt to expedite this investigation, and bring a quick end to the Shree farce.”
Shree Minerals were previously found to have commenced site clearing in May 2013 without having met preconditions of their permit, and were discovered in 2012 to have failed to cap exploration drill holes as required by the Mineral Exploration Code of Practice.
Shree Minerals current and former directors Sanjay Loyalka and Arun Jagatramka (resigned as Shree Minerals Chairman in Nov 2013) were directors of Pike River Coal when it was found guilty of nine charges relating to the mine explosion that killed 29 miners in NZ. Pike River Coal failed to pay the court imposed compensation to the families after receivers discovered the insurance payout to the company had been used to fund the legal defence of the directors.
Mr Jagatramka was also Chairman of Gujarat NRE Coking Coal (now Wollongong Coal) before standing aside and is now in dispute with new owners around ‘abnormalities’ in financial transactions.
Mr Loyalka was a consultant to Gujarat, and served on the Gujarat audit and management committees and has also stepped aside. Wollongong Coal is now in a dispute with the former parent company, Mr Jagatramka’s Indian based Gujarat NRE over a $60 million dollar sum owed by Gujarat for coal shipments.
The company’s Wongawilli mine in NSW also suffered a roof collapse burying machinery, although fortunately without casualty.