Illawarra Residents for Responsible Mining Inc v Gujarat NRE Coking Coal Ltd

November 2012

EDO NSW represented Illawarra Residents for Responsible Mining Inc (IRRM) in Class 4 judicial review proceedings in in the Land and Environment Court of NSW. IRRM sought among other things, an order restraining Gujarat from carrying out mining at an area referred to as ‘Longwall 4' until specific approval or development consent under the Environmental Planning & Assessment Act 1979 (EP&A Act) was granted.

In April 2012, Gujarat commenced mining operations at Longwall 4. Our client is concerned that the operations being undertaken, although within the area covered by consolidated coal licence 745, are not within the area to which the original Project Approval gives approval to carry out mining operations. Furthermore, that in commencing and continuing operations at Longwall 4 without project approval under Part 3A or development consent under Part 4, Gujarat is in breach of the EP&A Act.

Subsequent to the commencement of proceedings, Gujarat made an application to the Court requiring IRRM to provide a bank guarantee for the sum of $75,000 to secure the respondent's costs in the event that proceedings were unsuccessful. On 22 November 2012, the Court handed down judgement in relation to this application. The Court made orders upholding Gujarat's motion for security for costs, but settling the sum at $40,000. The substantive proceedings were stayed pending compliance with this requirement by IRRM, with which it was unable to comply.

On 13 December 2012 the proceedings were discontinued by consent of both parties.

EDO NSW is grateful to barrister Mark Seymour for his assistance in these proceedings.

Judgment