As a result of increased Cape size vessels (draft over 14 metres) utilising the Port of Gladstone in recent years, vessel interaction forces present an issue at GPC's RG Tanna Coal Terminal (RGTCT).
Due to the current configuration of the Clinton Channel, Cape size vessels are required to pass within approximately 80 metres of vessels berthed at RGTCT. Displaced water from the passing vessel may result in significant forces on the berthed vessels which poses a risk of vessels breaking mooring lines and moving off the RGTCT wharf.
GPC's Clinton Vessel Interaction Project aims to mitigate these issues and several options to improve the safe and efficient passage of vessels have been investigated.
After more than 12 months of detailed planning and investigations, the widening of the Clinton Channel has been identified as the preferred option to mitigate the vessel interaction issue.
GPC has continued to work closely with industry specialists and key stakeholders on the improvement options to select the preferred mitigation strategy.
In July 2017, GPC lodged applications to the Federal Government to progress its Clinton Vessel Interaction Project.
State applications will be progressed following the completion of the Master Plan for the Port of Gladstone.
The proposed project involves dredging approximately 800,000m3 to widen the Clinton Channel by approximately 100m. This will alleviate the interaction forces between vessels as there will be greater distance separating the passing vessel from those berthed at RGTCT.
If approved, the dredged material will be placed in the existing Western Basin Reclamation Area in alignment with the State Government's Sustainable Ports Development Act and its commitment to the protection of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park under the Reef 2050 program.
GPC has worked closely with both State and Federal Governments to determine the approval processes required for the project, and has lodged the following for approval:
- Material Change of Use (MCU) for an Environmentally Relevant Activity (ERA)
- Operational Works that is Tidal Works
- Allocation of Quarry Material (AQM)
The project is assessable by the Queensland Government under the Sustainable Planning Act 2009, the Coastal Protection and Management Act 1995 and the Environmental Protection Act 1994.
- Referral to the Department of Environment and Energy under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act).
If approved, it is anticipated that ancillary works could commence at the end of 2018 with dredging commencing the later half of 2019. Further details will be made available throughout the approvals process.
GPC will continue to keep the community fully informed of any developments as works commence on this project.
For more information regarding the Clinton Vessel Interaction Project, please contact GPC's Corporate and Community Relations Team via email or phone 1800 243 GPC.