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Region in Focus: Latrobe Valley

The Latrobe Valley coal mines have been providing the power stations in the area with raw materials for most of the past 100 years. These materials generate a significant amount of Victoria’s electricity, and now, as an energy transition is underway, the state will move from coal to a more renewable energy source.

The Hazelwood brown coal mine closed in 2017 and is now being decommissioned to rehabilitate the site. Yallourn will cease electricity production in 2028, and the Loy Yang A power station is set to close in 2035 (with a license to continue production until 2048).

Below are some of CRC TiME’s projects that will support a positive post-mine transition in the Latrobe Valley

Project 1.3 Mapping the regulation of mine closure (Completed)

This project, led by Professor Alex Gardner of The University of Western Australia, mapped the Australian regulatory framework for mine rehabilitation and reviewed the experience in applying that framework to site rehabilitation, closure, and tenure relinquishment in the transition to post-mining land uses that benefit regional development. 

Overall, it aimed to identify how the regulatory framework facilitates mine rehabilitation and repurposing, as well as when and where elements of the framework may not align well with the goals of mine rehabilitation and repurposing contributing to regional development.

Project 1.3 Final Report

Project 1.3 Latrobe Valley Case Study

Project 1.7 Collaborative planning for post-mining development in the Latrobe Valley

Led by Associate Professor Jessica Reeves of Federation University, this project will bring together all parties to consider opportunities on extensive lands currently zoned for mining present for the future once coal extraction is complete.

It responds directly to community feedback about the need for a collaborative process to raise awareness about desirable, feasible and viable options.

Project 3.9 Climate change induced risks for the performance of vegetation on mine rehabilitation soul covers in the Latrobe Valley

Led by Professor Thomas Baumgartl of Federation University, this project will investigate the possible consequences of climate change on the performance of vegetation on soil covers in a representative Latrobe Valley mine rehabilitation environment.

This project is in response to a climate analysis, which predicts that soil drought conditions will affect plant growth and vegetation in the Latrobe Valley. This exposes mine rehabilitation soil covers to a high risk of drought, resulting in established vegetation having difficult conditions to survive in. In response, the vegetation cover may be reduced to compensate for the reduced amount of soil moisture.

Project 4.2 Mine Rehabilitation Trials Online (MRTO) (Completed)

This project, led by Associate Professor Peter Dalhaus of Federation University, developed a framework to underpin interoperable knowledge systems to provide CRC TiME project participants and the mine rehabilitation industry platforms for sharing data, information and knowledge on mine closure planning and practices.