Peak plans met with positive reception from meeting crowd

Community member Werner Muhlethaler was among those who spoke with Peak Gold Mines representatives including Samantha Lloyd (pictured) about the mine’s plans for the future at a community information night last Thursday.

The information presented by Peak Gold Mines staff at their community information night last week seemed to be well received by the public.

The mine held the first of its quarterly community information sessions for the year on Thursday night at the Cobar Bowling & Golf Club with approximately 10 members of the public in attendance.

Peak’s general manager Neal Valk gave an update on the current employment statistics along with drill results of Peak North Mine and Kairos Deeps.

Mr Valk also spoke about the progress of the process plant upgrade which he described as “a very worthwhile investment”.

When discussing water security for the mine, Mr Valk said Peak had been given a directive from the government to become more self-sustainable.

He said the recent rain had been welcome.

“It rained last week which is great for everyone, but it doesn’t fix our situation with water in this drought and the next drought as well,” Mr Valk said.

He said after the mine recently received  final approvals from council and the Natural Resources Regulator, they were able to begin pumping water from the old Great Cobar shaft on February 6.

Mr Valk said at this stage they are unsure of the water quality as the water had been sitting there for some 70 to 80 years.

He said Peak plans to spend a further $1million on a Reverse Osmosis plant to treat the water.

In contrast to previous community meetings where a number of grievances have been aired, the questions put to Mr Valk and his staff by the public at last week’s meeting were all positive and constructive.

The mine’s environment group manager Jonathon Thompson said he was pleased with feedback from the meeting.

“The discussion had was very constructive and will help inform the New Cobar Complex EIS in the future.

“It would have been great to see a larger turnout but we really appreciate the people who did turn up and took time out of their busy schedules,” Mr Thompson said.

“In the last 12 months we have noticed that people are asking more specific questions about the project and also raising valid points that have allowed us to go back and reassess our plans.

“An example of this is the relocation of the vent rises with the idea arising from collaboration with the community through these meetings,” he said.

“We believe that people are becoming more informed with the projects at Peak and we appreciate everyone’s feedback.

“Again, I would like to reiterate that we run these meetings because we want the community to turn up, discuss what is happening at Peak and help us to better inform our future decisions,” Mr Thompson said.