By Colin MacGillivray
Currowong Resources officials pledged to minimize disturbance at Reedy Creek after some residents complained about noise and dust created by the mining company’s drilling operations in the area.
About 15 Reedy Creek residents attended a community meeting with Currowong Resources officials earlier this month to discuss the company’s gold exploration operations in the area.
Currowong was granted an exploration license for the area surrounding Reedy Creek by the Land Resources Branch of the State Government Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions in October 2020.
The company began drilling near Reedy Creek last year and hosted a meeting with the Reedy Creek Progress Association on April 10 for residents to ask questions about its operations.
Resident Kim Edwards said she and others at the meeting shared their concerns about the noise and dust generated by the drilling.
“It makes a terrible noise all day. When they started it was like a truck going up the hill and not coming, then they switched to an air drill which makes more of a high pitched whining noise,” she said.
“At one point I was coming back from up the hill and thought there was smoke in the air, but it was dust from the drill.
“Reedy Creek is a nice, quiet little town, and when things like this happen, it doesn’t seem right.
“It’s also a terrible thing for wildlife. For years, lyrebirds have come out from the back of our house, and since they started drilling, we haven’t seen or heard the lyrebirds.
Currowong community relations adviser Michael Robinson said the company would do everything possible to ensure residents were not unduly affected by its operations and had already made significant concessions in response to residents’ concerns, including by eliminating weekend drilling.
“Previously at Reedy Creek, where issues have arisen or community members have had concerns, Currawong has made significant changes to drilling operations in response, through measures such as drilling only on weekdays and l investment in noise barriers,” he said.
“Currawong has also changed Reedy Creek’s hours of operation from 7 a.m. to 8 a.m. specifically to accommodate two shift workers who don’t go to bed until late at night.
“Currawong is, as this demonstrates, a company that listens to the community and responds to feedback in a practical way.”
Mr Robinson said Currawong had scheduled the meeting during a period without active exploration around Reedy Creek so that community feedback could be incorporated into the next phase of his exploration.
He said another town meeting was planned later this year in agreement with the attendees.
“Currawong has taken note of community feedback, both positive and negative, and has begun planning how to ensure these suggestions are incorporated into future work programs,” he said.