Save Lue!

Residents in Lue and surrounds overwhelmingly oppose the Bowden's mine

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The Bowden's mine is situated a mere 2.5km from the centre of the village of Lue and the Lue Public School.

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The mine proposal is to process 2 million tonnes of ore per year over the next 17 years. Extraction is expected to be in the vicinity of 4 million tonnes per year. Movement will be approximately 6 million tonnes of material per year around the site. Processing of the ore will be on site.

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Silver Mines Limited (SVL) have confirmed they will not be filling the void of the mine when mining is finished. Estimates indicate there will be a hole approximately 1.5km wide by 300 meters deep and a health risk to the surrounding environment forever.

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Approximately 900 persons live in or surrounding the village of Lue. All will be adversely affected in some way, shape or form.

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Property values in Lue and the surrounding area will fall. There is no evidence that mine workers will move to Lue. Current Lue and Lawson's Creek residents did not move here to get a job in a mine nor did they move here to live with the effects a mine creates to the environment.

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Lue has a number of significantly important environmental assets that will be threatened by the mine. In particular the critically endangered Blakely's Red Gum. There are also Koala sightings in the area around the mine.





Experts say: the risks are real

The Lue Action Group has employed a number of experts to investigate the possible risk of Lead to the community of Lue and the environment around Lue. In particular, Professor Barry Nollar and Mark Taylor. The evidence overwhelmingly indicated that residents and environment within 2km of the Mine would almost certainly be affected and it was probable that residents and the environment out to 5km from the mine would be affected by Lead. The effect would be from dust blowing from the site. Due to the nature of the open cut mine, there would be no possible way to prevent the lead dust leaving the site and effecting the surrounding community and environment.

The people of Lue don't want it

Residents in Lue and surrounds overwhelmingly oppose the mine. A Community Consultative Committee was formed late in 2016 and indications were that SVL had not developed their mine plan by consultation with the Local community. Bowden's proposal would have a serious detrimental impact on residents and the environment and would most likely wipe out the village of Lue. After discovering the proposal, all the Lue community representatives joined the Lue Action Group to oppose the mine.

Our community loses

Residents in Lue and surrounds overwhelmingly oppose the mine. A Community Consultative Committee was formed late in 2016 and indications were that SVL had not developed their mine plan by consultation with the Local community. Bowden's proposal would have a serious detrimental impact on residents and the environment and would most likely wipe out the village of Lue. After discovering the proposal, all the Lue community representatives joined the Lue Action Group to oppose the mine.

Our water is precious

The Bowdens Mine proposes to use approximately 2 Gigalitres of water annually to operate their mine. Heavy Metals mines use a significant amount of water in comparison to other mines. Silver Mines Limited (SVL) proposes to collect the majority of their water from on site. Some from bores and aquifers on the property and some from surface water. The proposal will take more water from the Lawson Creek Valley than all the other water users in the valley put together. Further, the water, once used will be contaminated and will not be able to leave the site. Leaching from the site and from tailing dams is likely and will contaminate Lawson Creek. Lawson Creek is Western fall water and flows into the Cudgegong River at Mudgee before joining the Macquarie River at Lake Burrendong. The potential risk to water users and water quality is mammoth. All tailings dams leak. It is just a matter of when.

There is no safe level of exposure to lead

There is scientific consensus that there is no safe level of exposure to lead. The risks are particularly high for children, with compelling scientific evidence that lead exposure reduces IQ and impacts upon behaviour, being a significant factor in the development of ADHD and anti-social behaviour. These deficits are life-long. There are also risks for adults from lead exposure. A paper published in Environmental International supports the findings of previous studies that children who are exposed to lead are more likely to suffer from behavioural problems. In tracking lead emission rates against the rates of violent assaults 22years later in six US cities, the study is able to document a clear association between lead in the environment and crimes of aggression.

In an interview with the ABC Radio's The World Today, an environmental scientist from Macquarie University, Dr Mark Taylor has stated that the evidence of this study, alongside other studies with similar results is quite compelling. Dr Taylor also stated that while lead from vehicle emissions is no longer the problem it was, lead from other sources such as mining operations remains a problem, and that is it not a dead issue at all.

Insufficient buffer between mine and existing community

A forum on lead held at Macquarie University, involving over 60 national and international medical, public health, environmental and toxicology experts from universities, industry, government and health departments, affirmed that the breadth of scientific research of recent decades supports the view that "there is no safe level of lead". The serious neurological and behavioural outcomes for even very small exposures to lead by children are well-documented.

The view of the forum was that every effort must be made to eliminate lead exposure. In view of past mistakes in allowing sources of lead exposure, such as in mining, to be in proximity to communities, the forum was of the view that the same mistakes must not be repeated. In their consensus statement, the forum declared that "Where new potential sources of lead pollution are proposed, there needs to be sufficient geographic separation, unlike the co-location of many existing mining and smelting industries and communities".

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