Don’t forget to read : "In the Press" for all current and past bauxite articles covered by the Toodyay Herald!!!
- Published: Tuesday, 17 November 2015 17:40
You have bought your forever property surrounded by the Morangup Timber reserve, the Avon Valley national park, the Morangup nature reserve, the Woondowing nature reserve or veiws across neighouring farm land only to learn that, if approved, a 24 /7 open cut bauxite mining operation could one day be your new neighbour.
What would you do?
Do you work with the mining proponents to help them design a mine that in the opinion of the proponents will be suitable to be located near your home? Or do you reject the very notion of such a proposal and fight to protect your way of life, the environment, the flora & fauna and everything that you moved to the area for in the first place.
Unfortunately mining is something that we all depend on, but surely we would all agree that there are places where mining should not occur, especially when mining will disrupt the lives of so many for the benefit of so few.
Who doesn’t enjoy taking in the beauty of the hills and valleys as you drive along Toodyay Rd while watching the scenery change with the seasons. How many of you have plans to move out of the city to live in an unspoiled area where the air is clean, the taste of unpolluted rain water is better than bought bottled water, the nights are quiet and the stars are amazing.
Is that not worth fighting for?
Most of the people living in these areas once lived in the city and all dreamt of escaping the rat race where they could own a little piece of paradise, while still being close enough to commute down the hill for work. Living alongside mining has never been part of the plan.
Would we not all agree that there is a point when royalties to state & federal Governments and a hand full of jobs should not be the only determining factor in decisions that are made on our behalf?
As citizens of this great democratic country that we all live in, we do have a say in what happens, we can change government policy, but this does not happen with one lone voice, it can only happen with the voices of many.
If you love the Perth Hills and the Avon Valley, then join AHMAG on the steps of Parliament House at 11:30 am on Wednesday the 25th of November and let’s show the politicians that mining along the Darling Scarp this close to metropolitan Perth is NOT acceptable, because if we do nothing we will one day look back with much regret.
We Need Your Help and Support
- Published: Tuesday, 17 November 2015 17:34
AHMAG are going back to Parliament House to present thousands of signatures on petitions to Chris Tallentire the Shadow Environment Minister (Legislative Assembly) and it would be great if you could all come along to show your support.
Where: The steps of Parliament House, Harvest Tce, West Perth
When: Wednesday the 25th of November 2015
Time: 11:30 am
We will be car pooling to enable people to come along who would not otherwise do so. If you intend coming ask your friends, your family or your neighbours if they need a lift.
Let’s show the politicians how many people do not want open-cut bauxite mining in the Perth Hills and the Avon Valley.
We hope to see you there.
The Propaganda Machine Continues To Self-Destruct
- Published: Tuesday, 17 November 2015 17:28
Even before it was announced to the ASX by BRL that the Felecitas and Fortuna recourses look set to become 100% owned by the People’s Republic of China, more members of the BAJV / BRL propaganda machine had resigned from the bauxite mining community advisory group (BMCAG).
The count continues to grow, but this time it was the well respected and valued members of the Toodyay Naturalist club, the Friends of the River and the Avon Valley Environment Society.
Given the stature of these representatives and what they stand for, it is pretty obvious that they did not wish to be used as pawns in a smoke and mirror campaign that has pictured members of these groups on Facebook and other media sources, where it appears that they have openly endorsed the destruction that will be caused if and when the proposed mines ever obtain approvals.
It has been pretty easy for BAJV / BRL to manipulate photographs and text to deceive our communities into believing that the Toodyay Naturalist club, the Friends of the River and the Avon Valley Environment Society were on board with these outrageous proposals.
In fact AHMAG members have even had people make the comment that the proposals must all be OK because the guys from the environmental groups are on the CAG.
Well they are not on it any longer. The question now is how long will it take for other members of the group to see through the smoke and mirrors that these companies are so good at putting in place to deflect what will really happen in our communities.
What a Great Show
- Published: Tuesday, 17 November 2015 17:19
Near perfect conditions saw people from surrounding areas turn out in droves to attend the 2015 Gidgy show and AHMAG would like to thank the Gidgegannup Agricultural Society for organizing such an outstanding event.
The AHMAG marquee was positioned adjacent to the old Toodyay Rd entrance and in front of the Hall and as usual we were inundated with people signing our petitions against open cut bauxite mining a mere 10 minutes from Gidgegannup.
We would like to thank all of you who stopped by to sign our petitions against the Felicitas and Fortuna mines, that if approved, will cover some 62 km2 from Wooroloo (Bailup Rd) to Wundowie and back through the heart of Morangup, all the way to the Avon river. (See this map)
It is also important to note that there is a pending exploration tenement over the Morangup timber reserve, part of the Avon valley national park and the Moondyne nature reserve.
Now with the prospect of these proposals becoming 100% owned by the peoples republic of China (PROC), opposition against these proposals is more important than ever.
Like us on Facebook and ask your family and friends to do the same. We must save our environment, our flora and fauna, the amenity of the communities that WILL be affected, our farmland and our water supplies.
It's Show Time Again
- Published: Tuesday, 17 November 2015 17:15
Gidgegannup Agricultural Show Saturday the 31st of October.
If you are not doing anything tomorrow, then why not come along to the Gidgegannup Agricultural Show.
We will have our marquee set up handing out information and collecting signatures against proposals to open cut mine for bauxite in the Perth Hills, the Avon Valley and a mere 10 minutes from Gidgegannup.
It has just become apparent that the proponents BAJV which is a JV 70% owned by Yangkuang Resources and 30% owned by BRL, looks set to become 100% owned by the peoples republic of China (PROC).
To read more click here.
If you have been wanting to sign a petition, come along to the show, sign a petition and enjoy one of the best small Ag shows around.
We hope to see you there.
- Published: Tuesday, 17 November 2015 17:09
We would like to thank those of you who have participated in our recent Morangup questionnaire, but we urge everyone to take part.
Since the questionnaire was delivered it has become apparent that the Felicitas and Fortuna resources could both end up being 100% owned by the peoples republic of China (PROC) to read more visit the link below.
If you are opposed or supportive of the proposed mines, then we respect your point of view, but please take part in the questionnaire, as the results will give AHMAG a true indication as to the real percentage of our community who are either for or against open-cut bauxite mining on the doorstep of our community.
Breaking News: Termination of BAJV Looks Imminent
- Published: Tuesday, 17 November 2015 16:49
Yangkuang Resources which is a State owned company of the People’s Republic of China and who currently own 70% of BAJV, looks set to become 100% owners of the Felicitas Resource and will buy out the 100% BRL Fortuna Resource, if a non-binding Memorandum Of Understanding (MOU) regarding the dispute between Yangkuang and BRL becomes reality.
NON-BINDING MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING FOR RESOLUTION OF DISPUTE AND TERMINATION OF JOINT VENTURES WITH YANKUANG
Representatives of Bauxite Resources Limited (‘BRL’) , Yankuang Resources Pty Ltd (Yankuang), and Yankuang Group Company Ltd (‘YGL’)’), on 21 October 2015, signed a non-binding memorandum of understanding (MOU) recording that they have negotiated a number of proposed transaction documents which, if approved by therespective Boards of Directors of BRL, Yankuang and YGL will see, subject to satisfaction of conditions precedent referred to below:
- The existing Joint Ventures between the parties terminated;
- BRL sell its interests in the Joint Ventures and its 100% owned Fortuna bauxite rights to Yankuang for cash consideration and a royalty right; and
- BRL buy back Yankuang’s shares in BRL and cease to be represented on the BRL Board.
With the Chinese free trade deal all but finalized.
100% Chinese ownership of the Felicitas and Fortuna Resources?
What will this mean for Toodyay, Wundowie, Wooroloo and surrounding areas???
- Published: Tuesday, 17 November 2015 16:32
Saturday the 17th of October saw our democratic process elect four new faces to the Toodyay council and we would like to congratulate the new councilors.
With four new faces entering council, it also means that four councilors have lost their seats.
It was surprising to say the least to see Rosemary Madacsi, who is an environmental scientist, toppled at a time when our communities and the environment are under increasing threats of the effects of landfill and mining in the Toodyay Shire.
Rosemary has spent hundreds of hours of her time fighting the Opal Vale land fill proposal, not for herself, but the shire as a whole and for that, we say Thank You.
We would like to also say Thank You to Andrew Mcann, Chris Firns, who lost their seats and to Rosemary, for providing the much needed checks and balances that is required while on council, because decisions made, or money spent by council is derived from our rates and can affect us all.
A special thanks to Danielle Wrench for running in the West ward and representing Morangup on an anti-mining platform. Losing by only 7 votes is an outstanding effort, given there were 5 candidates.
Let’s hope that the new look council will represent the Toodyay Shire and all of their constituents in an open, honest and transparent manner in all aspects of council.
Morangup Timber Reserve
- Published: Tuesday, 17 November 2015 16:25
If you live at the Northern side, or the Western end of McKnoe drive, or the Western end of Red Brook Circle in Morangup and feel you are far enough away from the proposed Felicitas mine not to be greatly affected if a proposed mine were to go ahead, then you may wish to re-think your position on open-cut bauxite mining in Morangup.
Bauxite Resource Limited (BRL) still have an Exploration tenement pending over the Morangup Timber Reserve, which wraps around Morangup and encroaches into the Avon Valley National Park and into the Northern end of the City of Swan.
BAJV have recently released an updated Frequently Asked Question flyer on their FB page, stating that they will not be mining the Avon Valley National Park or Conservation Reserves, but the 30% JV part owner, BRL have an Exploration Licence number 70/3537, still pending over the Morangup Timber reserve, parts of the Avon Valley National Park and the Moondyne Nature Reserve, as well as the entire Julimar Brook from Julimar Rd. While live tenements E/3366 and E70/3159 cover a large area of the Swan Shire.
There has always been a question mark hanging over why BAJV / BRL wanted to include Gidgegannup representatives on the Bauxite Mining Community Advisory Group (BMCAG) because to date there have been no announcements as to any intention to mine in the Swan Shire.
We believe that anyone remotely close to any tenements being held by BAJV / BRL need to stand up and be counted in opposition to open-cut invasive bauxite and other mining in the Perth Hills and Avon Valley, or complacency could see mining on your doorstep sometime in the not too distant future.
There will be people who say AHMAG are just scaremongering as most of the State has live tenements over it for exploration. While that may be true, there are two exploration companies in our midst who have aspirations to be miners and if they get a foothold in Morangup, Wooroloo and Wundowie, then other tenements being held by them, can soon become mines after dangerous precedents are set to mine in the Perth Hills and Avon Valley.
Visit this map and then zoom in on the yellow Morangup peg and view the tenements for yourself. If you click on the green areas, tenement numbers will be shown. The purple area is the pending tenement.
With council Elections being held on Saturday the 17th of October, make sure you vote for Candidates in your council Elections who do not support mining. While local governments cannot approve or reject a mining proposal, under clause 120 of the mining Act they do have a say and you want your councilors to do just that on your behalf, or we may all live to regret the future outcome.
Please like us on Facebook and get your family and friends to do the same. We need to get the word out even further and with your help we can do just that.
It is not too late for people power to win this fight, we can save the Perth Hills and the Avon Valley, we still have time so lets not waste it.
“Together We Will Be Impossible To Ignore”
Alliance along the Darling Scarp
- Published: Friday, 16 October 2015 11:34
• The Avon and Hills Mining Awareness Group (AHMAG) in
Morangup, led by Brian Dale
• Residents for Responsible Mining (R4RM) in
Bindoon, led by Clair Medhurst
• The Community Alliance For Positive Solutions (CAPS) in
Yarloop, led by Vince Puccio
All three groups have agreed to an alliance along the Darling Scarp, from Yarloop to Wannamal (Near Bindoon).
The aim of the alliance is to protect the Darling Scarp from the destruction that open cut invasive mining and refining has on the environment and the effects that 24/7 mining operations have on residential, peri-urban, semi-rural and rural communities.
Going forward the biggest resource on the planet will be food production, therefore our collective groups believe that productive farmland should be protected at all costs.
Climate change is very real and previous well known inland farming areas are becoming more and more marginal due to a lack of rainfall.
Properties along the Darling Scarp are still well known for reliable rainfall and therefore all farmland along the Darling Range should be listed as priority farmland and protected at all costs and not destroyed by mining.
With this in mind, AHMAG, R4RM and CAPS have pledged support to one another to rid the Darling Scarp of any new bauxite mines and refineries. This will not happen overnight, but with your help it will happen!.
If you haven't done it already, visit our individual FB pages, like the page and ask your family and friends to do the same.
The AHMAG slogan has long been “Together We Will Be Heard” but with this new alliance, We will become impossible to ignore.
- Published: Wednesday, 14 October 2015 09:30
Department of Environment and Regulation (DER)
“Separation Distances” (Buffer Zones) Submission Opportunity!
The DER have published and released a draft document which gives the public the opportunity to comment on “Separation Distances” From Industries such as Mining, Chemical plants etc and the acceptable distance from your Residence.
It is important to note that currently, if your house and outbuildings are at the rear of your block and are say 300 meters from your boundary and a proposed neighbouring industrial operation across the road is required to have a Separation Distance (buffer) of 1000 meters from the nearest residential property, then the required set back from your boundary is only 700 meters.
What this has done is erode your rights by enabling the proponent to use the 300 meters that you are away from your boundary as “THEIR” buffer zone.
Why should you care?
What if at some point in the future you decided that you wanted to build another dwelling for a B&B, granny flat, or maybe even split your block into two lots, but because 300 meters of your property has now been labeled part of the industry buffer zone, the 300 meters of YOUR property is now sterile and can no longer be used.
In the case of bauxite mining or refining there are no separation distances, because the buffers are done on a case by case basis, depending on topography, location of crushes, conveyors, red mud lakes etc, etc.
Many people are of the opinion that separation distances from bauxite mining to the boundary of a neighbouring property (Not your house and outbuilding) should be a minimum of 5km and in the case of a refinery it should be a minimum of 10 km.
Your submission can be in the form of a letter and does not need to be complicated, but it is extremely important to have your say.
The cut off date is the 19th of October 2015.
It is paramount that anyone who intends to lodge a submission, also insist that any separation distance MUST start at your boundary and not from your home, pool or any outbuildings, as this is your land and does not belong to the proponent to be used as their buffer zone.
A full copy of the DRAFT separation distances document can be found by clicking on the link below.
Toodyay Agricultural Show
- Published: Tuesday, 13 October 2015 21:34
The AHMAG army were back on the ground in Toodyay at the Ag show on Saturday and as usual we were out in force collecting signatures on petitions in opposition to the proposed bauxite mines by BAJV and BRL.
AHMAG would like to thank the Toodyay Ag Society for what was a great day and not even the hot weather could keep a steady flow of concerned people from signing our petitions.
We still have trouble understanding why the Toodyay Ag society would accept sponsorship from an exploration company that have aspirations of becoming miners, when 70% of the proposed resource is on productive farmland.
Extractive industries and companies like Austral Bricks who extract clay for basic raw materials for bricks and the like, have co-existed with farmers and communities for decades, but there operations are always localized in the areas of extraction on small 10 or 20 hectare locations, unlike the proposed 62 km2 area that BAJV / BRL plan to mine.
The Toodyay Agricultural Show offers a forum for local businesses and producers to exhibit, display and participate in different arenas, eg. cattle, sheep, goats, home produce and many more. The Show displays unique exhibits by local artists and crafters and has an extensive entertainment programme.
How exactly does open cut bauxite mining over a vast area which will destroy productive farmland in what is an extremely reliable rain fall area fit into the category suitable for an Agricultural Show?
BAJV / BRL do not even have a business model up and running, so they can be hardly classed as a local business.
They are both exploration companies who have aspirations of becoming miners.
The Royal Agricultural Society of Western Australia is a member-based not for profit organisation which works year round to promote primary industries and have close links to regional agricultural societies and livestock breed societies.
They support community and junior sporting groups which use Claremont Showground. They encourage regional and agricultural students through their involvement in educational scholarships and competitions which enhance the skills and opportunities of young people. The Perth Royal Show competitions benchmark excellence across a range of industries including wine making, beer production, dairy, food production, clothing production, the arts and sport.
They recognise the achievements of individuals through the Agricultural Hall of Fame, the Community Rural Achiever and the Rural Ambassador competitions and those are the values that we thought agricultural Societies stood for.
It is confusing to say the least why the Toodyay Agricultural Show would align themselves with any company that is not only intent on destroying thousands of acres of productive farmland, but has also divided a community on the issue of whether or not mining in the Perth Hills and the Avon Valley is an appropriate use.
Vote in the Council Elections
- Published: Tuesday, 13 October 2015 21:32
“Council Requires Good Governance”
October 17th 2015 will see candidates from different wards within all shires throughout WA facing their constituents with the hope of becoming a councillor.
Some councillors will be up for re – election while some new faces will challenge in the hope they can help mold the Shire into what they feel will be better for the communities in which they will serve.
The 2015 Toodyay Elections will see a total of 12 candidates vying for 5 seats. One seat in each of the Central, North and East Wards, while the West Ward because it is a bigger area will be contesting two seats.
The candidates that we believe will represent the Toodyay shire with integrity, vision and in an open, honest, and transparent manner are as follows:
Andrew McCann – Up for re - election
Rosemary Madacsi – Up for re - election
Chris Firns – Up for re - election
Danielle Wrench - New Candidate
Sally Craddock – Up for re - election
All candidates are worthy of the challenges that we all face within our communities and have pledged to view all proposed developments within the Toodyay Shire with open minds on social, environmental, tourism and long term merits and issues of each and every proposal that comes before them as a councillor.
We wish all of the candidates well with their campaigns.
Have you ever visited the Avon Valley National Park?
- Published: Tuesday, 13 October 2015 21:26
The Avon Valley National Park
The Morangup Timber Reserve
The Morangup Nature Reserve
Have you ever visited the Avon Valley National Park?
It is another one of those wonders that very few people actually realize is on the door step of the metro area right here in the Perth Hills. The community of Morangup know exactly where it is, as it is literally on the doorstep of their own community adjoining the Morangup Timber Reserve.
The Avon River, which is named Golguler by the Darling Range Nyoongar people, runs through the center of the Avon Valley National Park as it rushes downstream through the high rocky hills and outcrops to join the Swan River in the Walyunga National Park near Bells rapids and Brigadoon.
The Avon Valley National Park, the Timber and Nature Reserves are all cherished neighbours of the close knit community of Morangup and these Parks and reserves are home to many different species of Flora and Fauna.
To the horror of most locals there is a new neighbour wanting to move in next door “BAJV / BRL and Mining” many believe these companies and mining will be the neighbour's from Hell and will bring with them all of the negative effects that full blown open cut bauxite mining has on local communities and the environment.
Did you know that under the mining Act, Timber and Nature reserves have no real protection from mining and even National Parks can be mined, it just takes longer to get approvals?
Imagine if the Felicitas mine is approved and in 10 or 15 years’ or maybe even less, the proposed miners move the operations into the Morangup Timber Reserve. The Morangup community would have mining on 3 sides, being the West, North and already proposed Eastern side of the community.
Some believe that open cut bauxite mining is nothing more than a big gravel pit and that the effects will be minimal, but most understand that mining here is a massive threat not only to our community, but to the environment itself.
Any approvals to mine alongside these reserves and the local communities will only see:
24/7 noise from Heavy machinery including surface miners, dump trucks, dozers, excavators etc.
24/7 noise from reverse beepers.
24/7 noise from crushing plants.
24/7 noise from a 20 km conveyor feeding the crushing plant.
Dust clouds from the mining operation.
Contaminated rain water from dust containing Silica and other harmful substances (Reticulated scheme water is not available in Morangup)
Losses to ground water which will be used for dust suppression.
Destruction of native vegetation and bush land.
Over time trees near mine pits will die from the lack of ground. water and moisture.
There will be Changes to the way in which water flows into creeks, rivers and ground water recharges.
Destruction of farmland when top soil is removed and the bauxite ripped out all the way down to the clay bed.
Losses to tourism along the tourist route.
Losses of jobs in tourism and other sectors.
Losses of jobs in organic farms due to crop contamination from dust etc.
Light pollution, which will destroy our beautiful dark night skies.
Desolation of plant and animal species.
Losses to property values.
How exactly does mining fit in to this location, or into the lifestyles of the Communities of Morangup, Wundowie or Wooroloo who all call this beautiful area home?
Don't forget to like us on Facebook and ask your family and friends to do the same, we have nearly hit 1,000 unpaid likes so your help to get there would be much appreciated.
Click the image below to view or download a larger PDF version.