Q. What information is there on the Project's local and non-local workforce numbers and their settlement in the region?
A. The Project will require approximately 200 full-time equivalent employees from Year 1 with a peak of 600 employees expected at approximately Year 21 of operations.
An analysis of the Sub Regional Study Area demographics suggests it will be able to absorb a substantial proportion of the jobs created by the Project. However, the skills and working intentions of that available labour are not known and therefore it is difficult to predict the industry sectors and occupations that this available labour may be placed in the future. It is also difficult to predict how many people currently working in other industry sectors in the Study Area will move to new occupations in the mining and resources sector as a result of the Project, or as a result of other mining and resource projects in the Study Area.
In the event that the available labour supply is not sufficiently qualified to meet the workforce requirements for the Project, Shenhua Watermark has committed to a suite of employment and training measures by means of a Social Impact Management Plan in conjunction with State government initiatives to address workforce supply and skills issues. In this regard, the Project will be able to adequately meet its workforce requirements.
Q. What is the current accommodation market supply and the available capacity to house the Project's construction and operations workforce?
A. Shenhua Watermark intends for its construction and maintenance workforce to utilise the MAC Werris Creek Workforce Accommodation Facility to avoid placing undue short term excess pressure on local rental demand.
During the operations phase, employees will be locally based or encouraged to relocate and settle in the region. A range of affordable accommodation options exist within the Sub Regional Study Area to cater for the initial influx of employees and their families. Given the incremental nature of the growth in housing demand between Year 1 and 21 in association with the increasing workforce, the Project is not expected to contribute to a rapid rise in costs, providing that new housing and rentals can be provided in a timely manner. These gradual increases would appear compatible with the amount of land and redevelopment sites that are already available for future housing in the respective LGAs, and are within the levels of rates of housing development shown in the past by each of those areas. As such, the Project is unlikely to place significant pressure on the local accommodation market.
Despite this, Shenhua Watermark has committed to monitoring of the housing market and implementing employee incentive schemes to manage the Project's impacts on accommodation in the Sub Regional Study Area.
Q. What is the Project's potential impacts on community services and facilities?
A. The construction workforce is likely to impact on health facilities, especially facilities nearest to the proposed Workforce Accommodation Facility (MAC Werris Creek). However, during the operations phase, the expected impacts of the Project will generally be incremental and absorbed by the natural growth of facilities. Collectively, the Project workforces will also impact on the requirement for appropriate skills training.
To alleviate the pressure of the Project on local services and facilities, Shenhua Watermark has committed to making contributions by means of VPAs to local councils. Furthermore Shenhua Watermark has committed to implementing a range of employment and training opportunities to address the issue of skilled labour availability. In this regard, the impacts of the Project on local services and facilities will be offset by such initiatives.
Q. What cumulative impacts will this increase in population have on our community ?
A. The cumulative impact of current and future mining and resource projects in the region will
have a far greater impact on population growth, housing demand and service delivery in the
region than the Project alone.