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Mining Camp


To say I am frustrated would be an understatement.


I am currently 23 pages into the “Proposed Cobar Mine Workers Village Expansion 12769 Barrier, Cobar NSW” and I want to cry.


How can people produce a document that is riddled with lies?


How can this be a positive thing for Cobar?


Oh wait, it’s not.


In the introduction they quote the Cobar Local Environmental Plan 2012 (LEP)


“To encourage a range of housing, employment, recreational and community facility to meet the needs of exiting and future residents of Cobar;


To promote the efficient and equitable provision of public services, infrastructure and amenities”.


Please, can someone explain to be how expanding the mining camp from housing 119 people to 199 is beneficial?


Under Context and Setting it is stated “Due to the large size of the site, and the comparatively small footprint of the mining village area, the amenity of the surrounding area will not be affected by the expansion of the mining village”.


“Land immediately adjacent to the site is generally undeveloped. The closest residential receiver to the site is on the northern side of the Barrier Highway, approximately 200 metres to the north. Beyond this, the next closest residential receiver is over 700 metres away. This separation distance means that the mining village expansion is unlikely to give rise to any signifiant amenity impacts on this residential property.”


Of course, because it is not inside the town. It is in the middle of no where.


Under Servicing

Water - “Potable water will continue to be supplied from the existing town water supply connection as per the existing arrangement”. Ok, so what happens when we run out of water?


Noise & Vibration

“The expansion of the mining village may result in a slight increase in generated noise, however it is not considered that there not be any significant detrimental impact to any nearby receiver in relation to noise or vibration from the village.”


Noise, no, no one in Cobar will be able to hear them at all because they are out of town.


Under Social Impact

“People affected by the project are likely to be limited to the occupants of the facility. Limited downstream impacts to local residents are predicted on the basis that the facility is well removed from the urban area of town. Noise and similar direct impacts are no predicted”.


Ok, so you expand the mining camp on the outskirts of town because you are being considerate to the locals? It has nothing to do with the fact that the miners who stay have to eat, sleep and socialise at the camp therefore no money gets spent in the town.


“Notwithstanding, this anecdotal view that housing supply is under pressure is therefore alleviated by providing an alternate and specific form of accommodation that responds to the demands and needs of this particular development sector”.


Last I checked on Domain, Cobar currently has 119 homes for sale. Sorry, but I am at a loss to understand the housing supply we have here.


This “magical” application is trying to sell the idea that it is a good idea to expand the camp. An additional 80 people to live at the camp, meaning a 1.7% growth in the local population. Fun fact, they don’t actually live here. They stay for their shift and then they go back to where they come from. The town doesn’t grow.


I could continue, but at the moment this application makes me sick. The people who have complied it have no connection to the town, to the people, to our community. Expanding the camp does not increase the town’s population, the camp does not attract people to bring their families to town. Their kids aren’t going to school here.


Dear Mining Camp Owners,

Buy houses in town.

Let them socialise in town with the locals. Have an agreement with the local businesses to supply their meals. Have an arrangement in place for these houses to be maintained. Attract families, as your employees are more likely to stay if they are with their families.


Just a thought.


In the meantime, let’s start a petition.


If you would like to read the application here’s the link - https://www.cobar.nsw.gov.au/9-general/latest-news/328-expansion-of-cobar-mine-workers-village


D x


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