Exploration processes in NSW are regulated by the DRE who grant exploration licences and regulate licence conditions. The Ridgelands EL conditions include measures to manage potential impacts on the environment and local residents from exploration activities. These include requirements for flora and fauna baseline surveys and protection measures, environmental controls such as erosion control measures, management of drilling fluids and rehabilitation, and restrictions on operating hours for drilling.
Drill hole locations have been selected in consultation with landholders and located to minimise effects on local environmental and residential amenity.
The exploration project will employ experienced contractors and has been designed to minimise impact to resident’s local amenity and lifestyle. Residents will continue to see periodic movements of the drill rig/s and other equipment on public roads, as well as traffic movements of geologist, ecologist and drilling company personnel.
Drilling has not generated odours for those drillholes completed, and odour is not expected to be an issue during any future drilling activity. Some noise and dust will be generated by the machinery during drilling and driving along unsealed road. This has been minimised where possible and managed in accordance with licence conditions. A water truck has been used to deal with minor dust generated during current drilling operations. This will continue to be available.
All drilling waste has also been disposed of to an accredited waste disposal facility, and this will continue for future drilling operations.
All drill sites have, and will continue to be, rehabilitated and reseeded in consultation with landholders.