The former Rum Jungle mine site (Section 2968 Hundred of Goyder) is located approximately 105km (by road) south of Darwin, near Batchelor in the Northern Territory. The site was declared a Restricted Use Area in 1989 under the Northern Territory’s Soil Conservation and Land Utilisation Act and is closed to public access.
Mining and mineral processing occurred from 1954 to 1971 producing 3,530 tonnes of uranium oxide and 20,000 tonnes of copper concentrate.
Activities at the site led to significant environmental impacts primarily caused by acid rock drainage, resulting in pollution of the East Branch of the Finniss River. The site underwent rehabilitation from 1983 to 1986 at a total cost of $18.6 million.
The original objectives of the works were to:
The former Rum Jungle mine site, contained within Area 4 of the Finniss River Land Claim (1981) was excluded from grant to the Finniss River Land Trust due to the concerns of the joint traditional Aboriginal owners of the site - Kungarakan and Warai. A decision in respect of the grant of the former Rum Jungle mine site is still pending.
Although at the time of the 1980s works the objectives were deemed to have been achieved, more recent studies have documented the gradual deterioration of the original rehabilitation works. In light of this and given advances in best practice standards in mine closure and rehabilitation, the Northern Territory and Commonwealth Governments recognise a need to develop an improved rehabilitation strategy for the site.
On 7 October 2009 the Commonwealth and Northern Territory Governments entered into a four year $7.048 million National Partnership Agreement (NPA) on the management of the former Rum Jungle Mine site.
The purpose of the NPA is to undertake various studies to inform the development of an updated rehabilitation strategy, which may then lead to future rehabilitation works under new arrangements.
The key outcomes of the NPA are:
The above outcomes will be achieved through:
The NPA is complemented by an Implementation Plan (IP) which outlines the milestones, performance measures and payment arrangements. The NPA and IP are being driven by the Northern Territory Department of Mines and Energy with technical oversight from the Rum Jungle Working Group which comprises representatives from Northern Territory and Commonwealth Government Agencies and the Northern Land Council.
The purpose of this website is to provide a range of information regarding the history of the former Rum Jungle mine site and new information obtained under the National Partnership Agreement. This website will be updated on a regular basis.