Adani's $15.5-bn Austrlian coal-cum-rail project in gets eco clearance

The Queensland government today announced the environmental clearance for Adani's Carmichael Coal Mine and Rail Project, making a significant step towards opening up the Galilee Basin for economic exploitation.

Queensland's deputy premier Jeff Seeney announced the approval to the project today.

The coal mine-cum-rail project in central Queensland, however, still needs to meet several other environmental and social conditions before it gets federal government nod.

"This project has the potential to be the largest coal mine in Australia and one of the largest in the world," Seeny said in a statement.

The Carmichael coal mine and rail project in the untapped Galilee Basin is perhaps the largest in the world. The mine will produce 60 million tonnes a year of thermal coal used in power stations. The project also includes a 189-km rail line north-west of Clermont.

The development of the Galilee Basin is vital to the economic growth of Queensland and Australia and would bring immense economic benefits to the people of Queensland, Adani Group said in a release.

''We welcome the decision of the Queensland government and this allows us to move to the next stage of the project, ensuring that local and regional communities continue to be involved in the development of our projects and share the economic benefits.'' Adani group chairman, Gautam Adani said.

''We remain committed to delivering the multi-billion dollar project, with world class standards, which will directly employ thousands of people during construction and over the operational period.''

Developing the Carmichael Coal Mine and the related rail and port infrastructure will deliver Adani's core pit-to-plug strategy.

Adani said it has ''followed benchmark engineering and technological standards to achieve this milestone through careful scrutiny and assessment by the coordinator general.''

Since 2011, Adani has owned the coal export terminal at the Port of Abbot Point, which has been operating to the highest environmental standards.