CADIA Valley Operations are here to stay but it doesn’t have to be a tumultuous relationship with the community and agriculture, according to general manager Tony McPaul.
The CVO feature exhibit at the Australian National Field Days is about proving to the community the mine can co-exist with farming and regional business.
Mr McPaul understands why the community feels the mine takes jobs and farming land and causes other industry financial strain, yet he dismissed the sentiments.
He said Cadia Valley was proof farmers and miners could get along.
“Things like the training opportunities we provide,” he said.
“Yes, we pay well but there are a lot of people who work at the mine and the farm.”
Mr McPaul said farmers often used their mining wage to subsidise their income from a bad season.
He dismissed claims the mine monopolised tradespeople in the city thus forcing Orange businesses to pay more to retain staff. he mine works with TAFE Western to provide training opportunities for unemployed people.
“We can’t take all of them,” Mr McPaul said.
“There’s trained people there for other businesses to employ.”
Mr McPaul was sympathetic to people affected by the lack of accommodation in Orange and surrounding areas at times due to fly-in and fly-out mining contractors. He said the Cadia East underground mine was near completion and accommodation should free up by the end of the year.
Mr McPaul said being a feature exhibit at the field days gave the mine an opportunity to be more transparent.
“I think it’s fair to say there’s a lot of people who don’t understand what we do,” he said.
“It’s no different to any other part of life, you’re going to get people who are negative, positive and neutral.”
Cadia has received mostly positive feedback about their presence at the field days, however Mr McPaul said he was only aware of one negative assessment.
Newcrest mining are the biggest landholder in the region with about 11,000 hectares.
About one third of that land is used for mining while the remaining area is dedicated to agriculture.
“We’re here, we’re going to be here for a lot longer and we can and will co-exist,” Mr McPaul said.
“All I ask is look at this display and form a better view rather than an uneducated opinion.”