Ranges mining bid withdrawn

By Jessica Micallef

An application for a mining exploration licence in the Macedon Ranges has been withdrawn.

Perth-based company Macedon Resources last month withdrew its application for low-impact exploration in an area east of Lancefield and Romsey.

An online petition against the licence, led by Romsey resident and comedian Tom Gleeson, received more than 5000 signatures in two days.

Macedon MP Mary-Anne Thomas described the application withdrawal as a “terrific outcome”.

“The community has spoken and the application for a mining exploration licence in the Macedon Ranges has been withdrawn,”
Ms Thomas said.

The application, submitted to the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning in September, sought permission for exploration work including rock chip sampling and analysis, geological mapping and low-impact exploration drilling in selected locations within a 234-square-kilometre area in the next two years.

Macedon Resources director Steven Standings previously told

Star Weekly that if a target was discovered, exploration and drilling could have continued for up to five years.

Macedon Ranges Residents Association secretary Christine Pruneau said at the time of the application that this was the third application for mining explorations this year in the area.

She said the state government had adopted its Helping Victoria Grow – Extractive Resources Strategy in June, aiming to give priority to extractive industries and to identify industry interest areas.

“However, the Macedon Ranges has recently been declared a distinctive area in Victoria protecting it from development,” she said. “It’s disconcerting that messages coming through are confusing.”