Dividends and Former coal mines in Australia transformed into lakes

If you examine the largest mining companies in the world, there is often an Australian property or properties involved. The island has some of the largest mineral deposits in the world and to mine them, large operations were built up.

In an article by Emma Graney, one of the biggest exports of Australia was and is coal. According to Geoscience Australia, the country has the 3rd largest coal reserves in the world and more than 11 billion tonnes has been mined since the late 1700’s. One of Australia’s biggest customers is China.

Coal was used to produce about 60% of the country’s electricity in 2017 but has been decreasing because natural gas is less expensive and now wind and solar are expanding.

There are interesting videos on the mining of coal and iron ore in Australia and the scale is large. Coal is often found under the ground and huge open pits are dug to take the coal from the ground. What should happen to the open pits once the mineral or in this coal is not profitable to be mined? It is age out question and if you ever been to areas where there are mines you likely have seen open pit mining.

In Ms. Graney’s article she highlights a transformation that has gone right. The Premier Coal company operated a huge mine and closed the mine in 1997. The mine located south of Perth in the town of Collie had been mining coal since the late 1800’s. The coal company had diverted part of the river to gain access to coal. The closing plans called for keeping the diversion channel. The mine site eventually filled up with water, overflowed the levee but a study said the water quality of the lake would continue to improve as the river water flowed through it.

In December 2020, Premier Mark McGowan opened a $5.2 million campground and boating site and the area is now known for its tourism. The issue will always it took years to rehab the land.

Linking to dividend paying stocks, it all industries there are supply chains and as consumers you often only worry about the last two – buying from the store and does the product work? In reality, supply chains go all the way back to the minerals the product is made out of and there are many concerns when the ore is no longer profitable, who should do something to the land to make it look the way it did before? There is no good answer except government funds are needed and time has to be on your side.

There are more questions than answers, till the next time – to raising questions.


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