The company’s proposal fulfils the relevant statutory obligations. However, the assessment also considered other relevant considerations, including broader state interests, said the publication, said the government


Bird in Hand gold mine rejected. (Credit: Matthieu Joannon on Unsplash)

Precious metals miner Terramin Australia’s application for the development of proposed Bird in Hand underground gold mine at Adelaide’s Woodside region has been rejected.

According to the Government of South Australia statement, Minister for Energy and Mining, Tom Koutsantonis, has declined the company’s application, after careful consideration.

The government assessed the concept for the proposed mine, and related applications for a mining lease and a miscellaneous purpose licence.

It included an eight-week public consultation, when Terramin responded to questions raised by community and government technical experts.

The mining company’s proposal fulfils their relevant statutory obligations. However, the assessment also considered other relevant considerations, including broader state interests, said the publication.

The proposed mine would have had a short-term life, and would potentially impact the surrounding businesses, including wineries in the region, which are associated tourism.

Tom Koutsantonis said: “This is not a decision I’ve taken lightly or easily. I appreciate Terramin’s cooperation in providing further detail about their proposed operation as requested.

“I’m also acutely aware of community concerns about the proposal, including from nearby wineries, residents and the local community.

“The area of the proposed mine is home to a world-class viticulture industry, producing some of Australia’s best-loved wines.”

The Department for Energy and Mining had received the applications for the mine operation in June 2019.

The assessment showed that the 265,000-ounce Bird in Hand gold resource can be effectively mined without unacceptable impact to the environment or third parties.

The government requested for clarification on several application and response documents.

In December 2021, Terramin has submitted its response to the last recent request, after which the Government has initiated a formal assessment process.

The Government completed a stringent assessment of Terramin’s application, including location, complexity of the proposal, environmental and social factors.

In arriving to a decision, the minister considered the broader state interest, including how the mine can match with the existing character of a particular area and its existing social values.

Koutsantonis added: “Tourism to the region is a critical contributor to the local economy and, on balance, there remains a possibility this proposed short-term mine may adversely affect the established and significant long-term agricultural and tourism industries of the Woodside area immediately adjacent the project areas.

“As such, I am not willing to risk these established local industries against the opportunity this short-term mine may provide, and have decided it is in the state’s interest to decline the Mining Lease and Miscellaneous Purposes Licence applications by Terramin for its Bird in Hand Gold Project.”