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The Abbot Point port is located adjacent to the Abbot Point Queensland State Development Area (SDA) 25 kilometres north west of the city of Bowen. It is Australia's most northern deepwater port used for the loading of coal for the export market. The port, which was established in 1984, is located 2.75 kilometres off shore and consists of a single trestle jetty with aconveyor that connects to a berth and shiploader. Abbot Point port also has a coal stockpile area and coal handling facility along with a rail in-loading facility. The port includes a large area of land set aside for large scale industrial development.

Abbot Point Port is Near the Great Barrier Reef

The Abbot Point port is strategically important to the North Queensland Bulk Ports Corporation as there are very few sites along the Queensland eastern coastline where there exists deep water of more than 15 metres so close to the shore. Its main problem is that it is also located close to the UNESCO world heritage rated Great Barrier Reef. It has also come into prominence as the port of choice for the development of coal mines in the coal rich Galilee and Bowen Basins.

Abbot Point Port Expansion Project

To cater for the expansion needed to handle increased export demands from the coal development occurring in the Galilee Basin, namely the projects being developed by Indian companies Adani and GVK, the port has undertaken the Abbot Point Expansion Project known as the AP-X Project. As further coal mining projects come on line from the Galilee Basin area it is anticipated that further expansion will be required beyond that being undertaken under the initial expansion plans. The AP-X Project is therefore being designed to grow as staged terminal development is required.

Aurizon in Negotiations Regarding Abbot Point Usage

Following Registration of Interests being called for regarding Abbot Point expansion in 2012 and 2013, a joint venture consisting of Lend Lease and Aurizon called 'NorthHub' and Anglo American became short listed as the preferred proponents. Anglo American relinquished its interests in October 2013 and in early 2014 Lend Lease withdrew from its joint venture partnership with Aurizon. Negotiations are still continuing with Aurizon which is a mainstay behind the ongoing development of the giant GVK Hancock mine and rail project in the Galilee Basin.

Abbot Point Dredging Spoil to be Dumped Onshore

Dredging is currently being undertaken as part of the approved expansion project that when completed will have Abbot Point become one of the world's largest coal ports. Dredging of the port is vitally important to the multi billion dollar Galilee Basin coal projects going ahead. It is currently being proposed that dredging spoil be dumped on land rather than in waters close to the environmentally sensitive Great Barrier Reef world heritage area. The Federal government is presently involved in the process of deciding whether to allow three million cubic metres of dredging spoil to be dumped onshore despite a high level of opposition from environmental groups claiming the dump area is too close to sensitive Caley Valley wetlands. The dredged spoil is planned to be dumped onto Queensland state owned land west of the port to be used as fill rather than in being wasted by dumping it at sea.

Federal government approval has been granted to allow GVK Hancock to export coal from the Abbot Point port since October, 2012. Approval conditions include a wetland management plan, monitoring water and air quality, a seagrass offset plan and funding for indigenous rangers, along with a total of 60 conditions imposed to protect the Great Barrier Reef. Coal exports are planned to begin from Abbot Point during 2016.

North Queensland Bulk Ports Corp

North Queensland Bulk Ports Corporation (NQBP) is a leading port authority responsible for facilities at the working ports of Hay Point, Mackay, Abbot Point and Weipa. NQBP became a port authority in July 2009, under the Transport Infrastructure Act 1994, and is one of Australia’s largest more


North Queensland Bulk Ports Corp
324 Queen St
Brisbane, QLD 4000



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