Environmentalists claim victory as United Funds withdraws mining application to explore near popular WA national park

A mining exploration proposal close to a pristine national park on Western Australia’s south coast has been withdrawn after community opposition.

United Funds has withdrawn its application to explore an area west of Denmark that backed onto the William Bay National Park.

The withdrawal was confirmed to the ABC by the Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety.

It followed a petition signed by more than 10,000 people who opposed the application to explore an area between Shadforth and Parryville — close to tourism hotspots Greens Pool and Elephant Rocks.

The Shire of Denmark had requested the application was re-advertised after landowners in the exploration zone claimed they were not consulted.

United Funds submitted an application to investigate the area for mining in May last year but public opposition ignited earlier this year when the plan was made public.

A ‘win’ for people power

Denmark Environment Center convenor Bart Lebbing said the withdrawal was a win for the community.

He said the government should now block any future exploration applications for the area due to its environmental and agricultural value.

“We’ve had 20 applications since the 1950s and we would really like to see this area excluded, full stop, from now on,” he said.

“If not, then every year, or [every] couple of years, we’ll get another company moving in.”

Mr Lebbing said mining companies must consult properly with landholders and communities before applications proceeded.

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