Environmental news

MAY 2024

Sharkey's Pit Backfill Project kicks-off

As part of our commitment to responsible mining practices, progressive rehabilitation, and in alignment with the private landowners’ expectations, FGM are backfilling and rehabilitating Sharkey’s Pit – located north of Campaspe Road – back to agricultural land use, which is in line with its existing land use zoning (Farming Zone). 

After months of planning and preparation, the backfilling and rehabilitation of Sharkey’s Pit commenced in earnest on 16 May 2024. The project is expected to take approximately 8 months to complete, after which topsoil placement and revegetation activities will occur.

More about Sharkey’s Pit

Sharkey’s Pit is an oxide open cut pit that was mined during the early 1990s, prior to the commencement of the modern sulphide operations at Fosterville Gold Mine. The pit is located on private property directly north of Campaspe Road within mining licence MIN5404. 

The southern portion of the pit was partially backfilled at the cessation of open cut mining, along with the reinstatement of Campaspe Road. The remaining open pit void measures approximately 350m long, 125m wide and 40m deep, with a void volume of approximately 820,000m3. The pit wall heights range from 10m to 15m across the pit profile.

What’s the process?

Prior to commencement of backfilling, FGM sought approval from the City of Greater Bendigo (CoGB) for the temporary closure of Campaspe Road to allow for backfilling activities to progress. 

Sharkey’s Pit will be progressively backfilled with oxide overburden material sourced from the Robbins Hill overburden stockpile. Vegetation clearance and preparation of the Robbins Hill overburden stockpile commenced in November 2023.

Backfilled material will be domed to allow for settlement and ensure the final form of the backfilled pit is consistent with the surrounding topography. Final revegetation activities will be scheduled to occur in consultation with the private landholder and timed to align with the planting season to provide the pasture species with favourable growing conditions.

All proposed activities relating to the Sharkey’s Pit backfilling project will occur on land previously disturbed by mining activities, which means that no remnant native vegetation will be impacted by the project.

We will keep everyone informed throughout this significant rehabilitation project.

If you have any questions regarding the Sharkey’s Pit backfilling, or FGM’s approach to mine rehabilitation, please contact a member of the FGM Environment and Community Team.

Project kick-off on 16 May ...