Explorations rights are up for grabs for the next wave of Queensland coal development for export, steel production and electricity generation.
Mines Minister Dr Anthony Lynham said more than 540sq km in the Bowen, Surat and Galilee basins was now open for tender.
“This exploration tender is about opportunity for the next wave of investment in a sector that sustains one in eight Queensland jobs and provides billions of dollars in royalties to fund doctors, nurses and teachers,” Dr Lynham said.
“The Bowen and Surat basins are already strong coal-producing regions well supported by transport infrastructure, with the Bowen Basin containing almost all of Queensland’s hard coking coal for steel production.
“The strong turnaround in coal prices has seen renewed investment in the sector, including the reactivation of mines such as Blair Athol and the commencement of construction on the Byerwen coal mine.”
The six areas are:
- four areas covering 490sq km in the Bowen Basin providing opportunities for thermal coal and possible metallurgical or pulverised coal injection
- one 19sq km area in the Surat Basin with potential for thermal coal
- one 32sq km area within the undeveloped Galilee Basin.
The tender requires the companies to offer cash with their bid.
Preferred tenderers must also meet environmental, native title, and other approvals, as well as land access requirements before on-ground exploration can start.
Queensland’s $37 billion coal industry is sustaining more than 20,000 jobs, contributing $3.4 billion in royalties to Queensland.