A basalt quarry in New South Wales has assured a wary community that it intends to tick all the required boxes, as the Richmond Valley Council considers a Development Approval.
Bentley Quarry lies 180 kilometres south of Brisbane and owners Rob and Sarah McKenzie have been developing the weathered basalt deposit into a 300,000 tonne per year operation.
Quarry approached the Bentley Quarry owners for comment after they went on the front foot and announced via the mainstream media their intention to work closely with the local community.
“We’re listening,” said Rob McKenzie, in response to local fears over the impact a large quarry might have on the peaceful farmland.
“We live here. We are hearing community concerns and want to assure everyone we have no intention of impacting anyone with our plans,” he said.
The quarry has supplied construction materials to councils, material wholesalers, farms, horse yards and private businesses in the past and the McKenzies intend to continue supplying much needed basalt.
A statement from Bentley Quarry indicated the development will satisfy concerns through dust mitigation and vegetation to preserve the view of the countryside.
“Bentley Quarry wants to contribute to this vision, not impact it,” Rob said.
“We need to make a living, but we remain a small, local, family-run business. We want to thank the Beyond Bentley group for their frank and honest feedback at this early stage.”
While the quarry will transport up to 300,000 tonnes of construction materials per year, the McKenzies emphasised that other local quarries were trucking double and triple that volume.
The couple, who moved to Bentley four years ago, said it’s in everyone’s interest for them to maintain the operation responsibly.
“We live on the same block as the quarry, so it’s in our interest to ensure that these impacts are managed well,” they said.