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Celebrating the best

Progressive approaches to the land and communities.

Guidelines for the 2019 Premier’s Awards in Energy and Mining are now available on the Department for Energy and Mining website with applications open from 2 to 30 September 2019. Any company or organisation that operates in South Australia’s minerals, petroleum, quarrying, METS (mining equipment, technology and services) and energy sectors is eligible to apply (Table 1).

In this issue we continue to feature 2018 winners – three companies (Hanson, Iluka Resources, Hillgrove Resources) leading in measures for environmental rehabilitation and bringing new approaches to future land use planning with spin-offs for their communities. With the high standard of projects in 'Excellence in Innovation: Environmental Management', the judges awarded two winners in this category.

Table 1 2019 award sectors and categories.
Sector 2019 award categories
 Diversity Communities Innovation
Mineral, extractives or petroleum exploration or operations
Resources: Diversity Resources: Working with communities Resources: Innovation - Environmental management
Resources: Innovation - Productivity improvement
Resources: Innovation - Health and safety
METS METS: Diversity METS: Working with communities METS - Innovation: Productivity improvement
METS - Innovation: Export market growth
Generation, transmission, distribution, retail, energy products and services
Energy: Diversity Energy: Working with communities - Delivering customer value Energy: Innovation - Productivity improvement
Energy: Innovation - Transformational innovation
Energy: Innovation - Health and safety
All sectors eligible Young achiever award (under 30 years)

Hanson’s Rowland Flat sand quarry progressive rehabilitation

2018 winner: Resources sector: Excellence in Innovation: Environmental Management

Rowland Flat sand quarry.
Located in the heart of the Barossa Valley, the Rowland Flat sand quarry is progressively rehabilitated to minimise visual impact. (Courtesy of Hanson; photo 417823)

By progressively rehabilitating the Rowland Flat Quarry, through structured pit planning and optimising the use of all materials on site, Hanson has minimised visual impact, regenerated local native vegetation using existing seed, returned land to a state where it ties into the surrounding environment immediately, and reduced dust generation impacts.

Quarry Manager Gino Tarca explains, ‘The Rowland Flat Quarry lies in the heart of the Barossa Valley, where we are mining for construction materials, including bricklaying, concrete and plaster sands, which build and maintain our cities and homes.

‘It is important that the site minimises visual impact and disturbed land footprint, whilst maintaining a cost-effective operation. Our good relationships with our local community are vital to supporting co-existence of different land uses in the area.’

Sarah Bellman, Hanson Quarry Operations Manager for South Australia, confirms the company has a strong commitment to the expansion of such programs to other sites. ‘This method of rehabilitation has recently been designed for the Hanson Golden Grove Site for implementation from 2019, with plans to replicate the learnings to the Maslin Beach Quarry in 2020’, she said.

Watch the project video

Iluka Resources’ Jacinth-Ambrosia Mine rehabilitation research programs

2018 winner: Resources sector: Excellence in Innovation: Environmental Management

Pearl bluebush.
Pearl bluebush: rehabilitation of the Jacinth-Ambrosia landscape post mining has involved developing holistic methods to generate seed and propagate with minimal water input. (Courtesy of Iluka Resources; photo 417824)

Iluka Resources’ Jacinth-Ambrosia mine operates in the Yellabinna Regional Reserve on the northern Eyre Peninsula, northwest of Ceduna.

‘The reserve has very important cultural heritage and environmental values’, explains Joanne Lee from Iluka Resources. ‘It is very important to Iluka that when mining is completed we leave a self-sustaining rehabilitated landscape.

‘One of the biggest challenges of working in an arid landscape is that so little is known about the native species. We have partnered with the University of Adelaide to look at the genetic variability of the important dryland species pearl bluebush (Maireana sedifolia) across the Eyre Peninsula to build a detailed bank of knowledge.’

That work investigated and identified holistic methods to generate pearl bluebush seed and propagate with minimal water input. Associated rehabilitation work seeks to reinstate the landform as close as possible to the original to honour the cultural and environmental heritage values of the area.

Iluka’s approach to partnerships and knowledge sharing between research and teaching institutions, the local community and the Far West Coast Aboriginal Corporation has led to broader positive impacts for land management in the region.

This program is a great example of local Aboriginal knowledge combining with science to achieve innovative solutions for local South Australian conditions.

For more information, contact Heathe Champion, Community Relations Officer, at

Watch the project video

Hillgrove Resources and the K4C Regional Master Plan

2018 commendation: Resources sector: Excellence in Working with Communities

Artwork for the K4C Regional Master Plan.
Artwork for the K4C Regional Master Plan (original artwork produced by Garry Duncan, Artist in Residence and KCCCC member, Kanmantoo). The master plan has empowered the local community to strive collectively for the best results for the region as the Kanmantoo copper mine transitions to a future after mining. (Courtesy of Hillgrove Resources)

Hillgrove Resources and the local communities of Callington and Kanmantoo, through the Kanmantoo Callington Community Consultative Committee, have established a regional master plan to deliver positive long-term benefit to the community that hosts the Kanmantoo copper mine.

With large-scale mining coming to a close, and the successful sale of the pumped hydro energy storage project rights to AGL Energy Limited, the plan has also built community capability as it transitions to a future after mining.

Developed over four years, the plan has empowered the community to strive collectively for the best results for the local region, and will have long-term impact when integration with existing local government planning is finalised.

The community-led process to produce the master plan identified projects including heritage, arts, economy and environment. Along the way, a unique collaboration grew with the University of South Australia’s Match Studio that gave the community access to affordable expertise in design, architecture and project planning.

Lachlan Wallace, CEO and Managing Director, Hillgrove Resources, said, ‘The community’s vision is that this process will be held up as a model for mining companies across Australia to positively engage with their host communities for the collective betterment of regions, the mining industry and government into the future’.

‘The partnership we have grown shows that even as a smaller company we can return significant benefits to the community – you just need to be able to think a little bit outside of the box.’

Watch the project video

More about previous winners and case studies

Awards dinner bookings

Friday 15 November 2019 at the InterContinental Adelaide.
Table of 10
Individual ticket

– Alisha Green, August 2019

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