The Queensland government has approved the extension of Carborough Downs coal mine, located 25km east of Moranbah in the Bowen Basin, Australia.

The Carborough Downs is an underground metallurgical coal mine, owned and operated by Fitzroy Australia Resources.

The extension is said to increase the mine’s lifespan by additional 11 years, and help continue good jobs for locals in the Queensland region.

The extended Carborough Downs mine is expected to start coal production in the coming 12 months.

Queensland Minister for Resources Scott Stewart said: “The Carborough Downs mine is a significant employer and economic contributor for the Isaac region and this extension ensures the future stability of those jobs.

“This investment is a strong vote of confidence in Queensland resources sector, including our state’s large deposits of high-quality steelmaking coal.

“Importantly, this extension will create flow on economic benefits for the entire Isaac region, from tools, safety and workwear suppliers right through to our pubs, café’s and accommodation providers.”

The operation currently employs around 700 people, with nearly 70% of its workforce being local or drive in, drive out workers.

The Minister said the Palaszczuk Government will continue to support the resources sector for the royalties and jobs, particularly in Queensland region.

The resources industry directly supports nearly 77,000 jobs across the state, particularly in the regions that contribute around two-thirds of all mining jobs.

Scott Stewart added: “Queensland is naturally blessed with the world’s highest quality metallurgical coal, which the world needs to make steel.

“Even as the world transitions to renewables, metallurgical coal for steel will remain an essential, and valuable, international export commodity for Queensland.”

In November 2019, Fitzroy Australia Resources had suspended operations at the Carborough Downs mine, due the on-site death of a mine worker.

The incident took place at the underground coal mine, located in the Bowen Basin at Coppabella nearly 20km east of Moranbah.