Kumara mine proposal 'on hold'

3:52 pm on 26 August 2022

An application for a proposed goldmine close to Kumara township is on hold with the West Coast Regional Council, which has asked for more information.

Kumara township

Kumara township. Photo: Supplied / Greymouth Star

The proposed mine, about 500m from the back of the town, requires sign-off from affected parties to gain the necessary consents but the applicants Phoenix Minerals Ltd, have yet to provide that, the council says.

The company lodged its application about six months ago on a non-notified basis to mine up to 50ha on a property bordering the south-western edge of Kumara. The area has previously been mined and farmed and is currently a mix of marginal pasture and mānuka scrub.

Consents and compliance manager Colin Helem said the council had requested further information from the company's proprietors, Chris and Donna Meates, to support their application.

"It's just sitting on hold at the moment until such time they supply the information we sought."

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This included an ecological assessment and a noise impact report.

"They still haven't submitted the further information that was requested. The ball is in their court to get that into our consent officer."

A decision about whether to publicly notify depended on Phoenix first gaining affected party sign-off and the council receiving the reports sought, which were "pretty standard," Mr Helem said.

Meanwhile, the council was fielding a lot of inquiries about the mining proposal, which reflected the community interest in Kumara.

The original Phoenix application said the effect of the proposal would be "less than minor" as proposed setbacks from homes bordering the site and the distance from the township would mitigate the effects.

The proposed mine would operate until the end of 2029 in line with the expiry of the existing mining permit held by Phoenix over the area.

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