A Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (DAF) spokesperson has confirmed to Quarry that the DAF is currently in the initial stages of an investigation to determine whether or not Adani Mining was authorised to remove and use material from the state-owned Red Hill Quarry.
The spokesperson explained that the quarry is situated on the Moray Downs cattle station, a property located northwest of Brisbane that is leased to Adani. Adani is currently conducting coal exploration activities in the area as part of its proposed Carmichael coal mine project in central Queensland.
“The DAF routinely monitors established quarry operations – both active and inactive – and other lands containing state-owned quarry material in accordance with the provisions of the Forestry Act 1959,” the spokesperson said. “DAF officers visited the Red Hill Quarry site in February 2015 and determined that state-owned quarry material had been removed.”
Upon reviewing Adani’s records, the DAF discovered that 5580 tonnes of low-grade road construction-type material had been removed from the site.
If the DAF’s investigation finds the extraction occurred without permission, Adani could be subject to a number of compliance actions. These actions range from the issuing of a warning letter or penalty infringement notice to demand for payment of foregone royalties or even prosecution.
According to the Australian edition of The Guardian newspaper, Adani also removed material from Red Hill Quarry without a permit in 2013. The company reportedly escaped being fined but was required to pay for the material used and the cost of the investigation.
The DAF spokesperson noted that Adani was assisting in the current investigation.