Livestock compromised says resident

HIGH antimony levels found in livestock living near the Costerfield mine have heightened resident concern regarding the believed pollution caused by the mine.

More than 50 government regulators and 40 residents attended a meeting in Heathcote on Tuesday night to discuss future options and alleviate issues.

Costerfield resident Pamela King said while Mandalay Resources, which runs the mine, listened to concerns, it still wasn't enough to quell concerns.

Many residents have been found with high antimony in their system and Ms King said livestock were now compromised. 

"We have been told that we will still be able to sell our animals but they haven't given that to us in writing and no one knows what the long term impacts are," she said.

Mandalay Resources sustainability manager Andrew Mattiske said the company was making changes in their operation to alleviate concerns.

"We have relocated the crusher, which some believe is causing the dust (pollution) and this is now protected by walls and has a roof on top of it," he said.

"While we do understand there are health concerns, we don't necessarily know what  has caused the elevated levels of antimony in the area.

"There are past mining operations and history here that need to be considered."

The company will use first-class air monitors to investigate the cause of antimony in the area and says it will continue to offer bottled water to residents who have been affected.

Ms King said the company was "playing catch up". 

"To have so many people come and talk us through the issue does show there is really something going on there though, because they wouldn't bother if it really was nothing," she said. 

"But despite this, there were no answers offered. 

"We will keep waiting."

Representatives from Mandalay Resources, the Environmental Protection Authority, Department of State Development, Business and Innovation, the Department of Health and the City of Greater Bendigo all attended Tuesday's meeting.

Mr Mattiske said the meeting helped bring greater understanding of the issue.

"We will keep investigating and determine if and what needs to be done," he said.

* Mr Mattiske has confirmed the crusher does not have a roof on it. He has retracted his previous quote above. 


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