Wandoan is a small social community town of 450 people, located on the Leichhardt Highway, 115 km north west of Chinchilla and 165 kms north east of Roma. It is part of the Western Downs Region Council area, and a major trucking centre for the local cattle industries.
Wandoan offers a quiet rural lifestyle ideal for the outdoor enthusiast, with sporting clubs and facilities including swimming, a sports oval, touch football, tennis, golf, and bowls. Wandoan supports rodeo, polocrosse and campdrafting, pony club and the Wandoan Diggers Race Day. Waterloo Plains Environmental Park comprises 11 hectares of wetlands and is a popular camping and tourist destination.
Education facilities cover the Preparatory Year (non-compulsory) followed by Year 1 to Year 10, as well as childcare. Community clubs such as Lions, RSL and Scouts are an important part of Wandoan community life.
Queensland Gas Company (QGC) is constructing a village in Wandoan to support up to 1500 workers. In addition, Xstrata Coal is proposing to develop an open cut mine at Wandoan, which is in the final stages of the approvals process.
Stanmore Coal is currently keeping the town alive till Xstrata now Glencore make up their mind.
Stanmore Coal's $500m Wandoan coalmine promises 500 jobs
- From: The Courier-Mail
- June 18, 2012
THE southwest Queensland town of Wandoan is likely to be surrounded by massive coalmines after a fourth project released details of its $500 million scheme that will generate up to 500 jobs.The Range Project by Stanmore Coal is expected to be a huge money-spinner for the state economy.
Its environmental impact statement, released late last week, said the open-cut thermal coal mine would add about $400 million to gross state product during construction and $15.6 billion during its 26-year life.
"The estimated total of taxation payments to all levels of government is $4 billion over the project life," the EIS said.
The plan is for workers to stay in fly-in, fly-out villages near Wandoan and the EIS said local business would benefit from new contracts while local workers would also have new opportunities.
It admitted there was a chance the skills shortage could be further increased by the development and there was a potential "draw-down" effect on some business and industries as labour was attracted to working in the resources sector.
Four major mines are now planned for the tiny community and environmentalists claim about 100,000ha of quality farmland will be destroyed by the expansion.
Western Downs Mayor Ray Brown said planning was well advanced for the projects but he was worried an entire demographic would be wiped out because ordinary workers could not afford to live in towns such as Dalby and Chinchilla and affordable housing was at a critical stage already.
"Our biggest hit is housing. It's crucifying our industries like the service sector," he said. "The last government did not have the guts to do something. I don't want to be political but Joh (Bjelke-Petersen) made these companies build towns and I know things have changed, and people want to live in Brisbane, but let's keep 30 per cent of the workforce for the region.
"We are facing enormous growth and we have to acknowledge the impact that is having. There are an enormous number of jobs but who wants to work in a cafe for $20,000 a year when they can earn $80,000 at the mine?"
The mines include Xstrata's massive Wandoan project to the west of the town, the Cockatoo Coal project to the east, Metrocoal's adjoining Xstrata and Stanmore's 5million tonne a year Range Project to the southeast.
The area also has significant coal seam gas operations.
Activist and president of Lock the Gate Drew Hutton said he will be telling farmers in the area this week that they either have to resist the expansion or pack up and leave.
"If they want to save this area they will have to lock their gate," Mr Hutton said.