The Draining the Lifeblood report was released in September 2013. In developing the report, data on projected groundwater use (extraction) for each of the 9 coal mines planned for the Galilee Basin was sourced either from the Environmental Impact Statements (EISs) or Supplementary Environmental Impact Statements (SEISs) submitted to the Queensland Coordinator-General by each of the mining proponents, or projected from the proposed mine production tonnages. The stated, estimated and predicted groundwater extraction from mine dewatering operations is shown in Table 4 on page 36 of the Draining the Lifeblood Report.
In reviewing the approval documents released by Federal Environment Minister Hunt in December 2013 for the conditional approval of the Waratah Pty Ltd - Galilee Coal mine proposal (formerly known as the Waratah Pty Ltd - China First proposal), it was noted that amended groundwater extraction data had been provided to the Minister for his consideration of the proposal.
Paragraph 693 on page 101 of Attachment A of Minister Hunt’s Recommendation Report outlines that the Waratah SEIS estimates mine inflows of 23.1 GL/annum to the underground mines and 2.6 GL/annum to the open cut mines and that mine inflows are expected to average 26 GL/annum over the 30 years of proposed mining. This indicates a groundwater extraction figure of 780 GL for the 30 year life of this project.
The Draining the Lifeblood Report shows a groundwater extraction figure of 127.3 GL for the Waratah - China First project proposal, 653 GL lower than the most recent estimate provided to Minister Hunt.
Accordingly this figure is now updated to 780 GL and the cumulative groundwater extraction of the 9 proposed mines has been re-determined at between 1522 – 2007 GL over the projected life of these mines, as opposed the original figure of 869 - 1354 GL in the Draining the Lifeblood report.