Iron ore company Karara Mining Limited and the Midwest Economic and Employment Development Aboriginal Corporation (MEEDAC), have taken out the inaugural Community Partnership Resources Sector Award.
Mines and Petroleum Minister Sean L'Estrange presented the award at the Department of Mines and Petroleum's Awards for Excellence ceremony in Perth.
Mr L'Estrange said Karara Mining had exceeded its social responsibility by forming a partnership with MEEDAC to establish and operate Innovation Park, a commercial 2,000-hectare farm about 200 kilometres east of Geraldton.
Innovation Park produces eggs, fruit and vegetables that are sold locally, help supply the Karara mine site, and are donated to the local food bank. The farm also provides training and employment opportunities for the local community.
"Partnerships between industry and local organisations can result in amazing outcomes for the community," the Minister said.
The inaugural Awards for Excellence evening also recognised the 25th anniversary of DMP's prestigious Golden Gecko Awards for Environmental Excellence.
"Highly prized by industry and environmental groups, the Golden Geckos recognise environmental excellence, leadership and performance above and beyond the State's environmental management requirements," Mr L'Estrange said.
This year, two Golden Gecko awards were presented. APA Group and Kingfisher Environmental Consulting were recognised for a program that monitored the endangered small marsupial, the Sandhill Dunnart; and Strike Drilling Pty Ltd was chosen for developing a drill rig that significantly reduced environmental impacts.
Other awards presented during the evening included:
- Golden Gecko Certificate of Merit: Roy Hill Infrastructure Pty Ltd for a project to minimise impact to mangroves in Port Hedland
- Enduring Partnership Award: Rio Tinto and Scitech Discovery Centre
- Community Partnership Merit Award: Cliffs Asia Pacific Iron Ore and Esperance Senior High School, Esperance Anglican Community School, Merredin College and Southern Cross District High School
- Community Partnership Merit Award: Newmont Boddington Gold and Gnaala Karla Booja native title claimants.
A gecko was chosen to symbolise environmental excellence because their presence shows an area under rehabilitation has a functioning ecosystem
The Department of Mines and Petroleum Awards for Excellence incorporate the community partnership award and the Golden Geckos
Minister's office - 6552 6900