Stockman Project

The Stockman Project is a copper and zinc mine project, 19 kms east of Benambra, in East Gippsland. The project includes a separate infrastructure mining licence that covers an existing tailings storage facility on the site. The Authority Holder for the site (both licences) is WHSP Stockman Pty Ltd, a subsidiary of Round Oak Minerals Pty Ltd, which is owned by Australian ASX listed company Washington H. Soul Pattison Pty Ltd.

A new Mining Licence for the area was granted to WHSP Stockman Pty Ltd in 2010 and renewed in 2017. In 2014, an Environment Effects Statement process concluded that the project could proceed subject to recommendations. An infrastructure Mining Licence for the tailings storage facility was also granted in 2018.

The site was formerly a copper zinc mine operated by Denehurst Ltd from 1992 to 1996. In 1996, the mine was placed into administration with Denehurst Ltd. defaulting on their environmental rehabilitation obligations.  In 2004, the mining lease expired and the Waxlip Spur site and the tailings storage facility (as they are on public land) reverted to the State. At this time Earth Resources Regulation commenced maintenance and rehabilitation works at the site. For information about the maintenance and rehabilitation of this site please visit the Benambra project page of our website.

Current status

A new Mining Licence for the area, which includes an infrastructure Mining Licence for the tailings storage facility, was granted to WHSP Stockman Pty Ltd.

A deed is now in place between WHSP Stockman and the Victorian Government under which the new licence holder has agreed to fund the future cost to monitor and maintain the tailings storage facility after they have completed their mining activities and rehabilitation. The deed includes a requirement for the company to provide the state with a bond in the amount of $5.77 million.

In accordance with the deed, WHSP Stockman will submit the bond and take over responsibility for the management of the site at the time their works commence.

The Stockman Project has now progressed through the latest stage of regulatory assessment, with a work plan having been approved in April 2019 for the site. Earth Resources Regulation assessed the proposed work in consultation with the Department of Environment Land Water and Planning, Southern Rural Water, the Environment Protection Authority, East Gippsland Water and East Gippsland Shire Council.

The work plan approval sets conditions on the activities that will be carried out under the licence, subject to further approvals, including mining, processing and the tailings storage facility. It includes safeguards to protect the water quality of Straight Creek, a tributary of the Tambo River and Gippsland Lakes.

Future Plans

WHSP Stockman needs to develop Environmental Quality Objectives, in consultation with East Gippsland Water and the Environment Protection Authority. The objectives will be used to compare monitoring data during and post-mining operations so that water quality standards can be set to maintain existing background conditions in the upper Tambo River.

Conditions of the work plan approval

Community engagement

WHSP Stockman has a duty to consult with the community throughout the period of any licence that is granted under Section 39A of the Mineral Resources (Sustainable Development) Act 1990.

Community members can participate in the consultation process at any time during a project's life cycle. Any concerns that community members have with the project can be discussed with WHSP Stockman directly.

WHSP Stockman

Regulatory compliance

We ensure that operators comply with the conditions of their licences. Learn more about our compliance and enforcement activities.

Feedback and contact details

If you have any queries or feedback regarding the Stockman Project you can contact us or WHSP Stockman directly.

Earth Resources Regulation

Page last updated: 01 Dec 2021