Impacts of Mine Subsidence on the Strata & Hydrology of River Valleys: Management for Undermining Cliffs, Gorges & River Systems

Underground » Environment - Subsidence and Mine Water

Published: September 20Project Number: C8005

Get ReportAuthor: Arthur Waddington, Don Kay | Waddington Kay and Associates


Since March 1999, original research work has been carried out to study the impacts of underground coal mining on creeks, river valleys, gorges and clifflines.

Numerous longwall extractions have already been completed and many more longwalls are planned beneath creeks, river valleys, gorges and clifflines in the NSW Coalfields. Indeed, the very nature of the topography makes it virtually impossible to avoid such features. All of the current coal mining operations in the Southern Coalfield, and most of those that are planned in future, are taking place in areas of steep topography and are likely to have some impact on creeks, river valleys, gorges, clifflines and associated infrastructure.

The research work is being undertaken by a multi-disciplinary team of researchers and the various aspects of the work have been split broadly into four sections as follows:

Management of the project, literature search, state-of-the-art review, empirical study, development of empirical predictive techniques and preparation of the final report, incorporating the work of other researchers. (Waddington & Associates Pty Limited)

Surveys and monitoring of ground movements, geological investigations and hydrological studies, rock classification and testing and in situ stress measurements. (Carried out by BHP supported by external consultants, with data input from other collieries, the NSW Dams Safety Committee and Sydney Catchment Authority)

Numerical modelling and development of numerically based predictive methods. (CSIRO Petroleum)

Design and construction of a physical scaled model that can be used to illustrate the underlying mechanisms of strata movements for a range of different mining scenarios. (The School of Mining Engineering of the University of New South Wales)

The research work has been funded in two stages and this report describes the work completed in the first stage of the project, which was completed in August 2000.

The report includes a comprehensive state-of-the-art review and some initial findings that have arisen from the empirical studies, the numerical modelling work and the initial testing of the physical modelling facility. The research work is continuing and it is projected that these ongoing studies will provide new insights into the mechanisms involved as creeks, river valleys, gorges and clifflines are undermined.

The final output from the research project will be a set of management guidelines, to assist mining companies that are planning to mine in areas of steep topography in the future. The importance of ongoing research in this area can not be overemphasised, since future longwall approvals might well depend upon it.

An e-newsletter has also been published for this project, highlighting its significance for the industry.


Health and safety, productivity and environment initiatives.

Recently Completed Projects

C27039True Triaxial Strength Of Coal Measure Rocks And Its Impact On Roadway Stability And Coal Burst Assessment

Rocks in the ground are subject to a range of stresses. The stresses...

C3063Underground Vehicle Design Standards And Statutory Implications

The Australian underground diesel vehicle fleet has evolved since di...

C3064Conveyor Belting And Lagging Shear Characteristics - Drive Drum Slip

The primary aim of this project was to investigate the relationsh...


Open Cut

Safety, productivity and the right to operate are priorities for open cut mine research.

Recently Completed Projects

C26029Geological Controls On Fluorine And Phosphorus In Bowen Basin Coals

Increasing global restrictions on fluorine in product coal prompted ...

C28033Raw Ash To Yield Relationships

Correct outcomes in yield predictions for product ash from coal bore...

C27038Establishing Self-Sustaining And Recognisable Ecological Mine Rehabilitation

In recent years an increasing interest has been placed on mining ope...

Open Cut

Coal Preparation

Maximising throughput and yield while minimising costs and emissions.

Recently Completed Projects

C27064Dry Beneficiation Using FGX And X-Ray Sorters

Conventional dry processing methods engage a single beneficiation de...

C26010Multi-Sloped Screening Efficiency With Changing Strokes, Frequencies, Feed Solids And Feed Rates-Pilot Plant Study

Optimising multi-sloped screens is often described as an art and the...

C28059Impact Of Water Quality In Coal Handling And Preparations Plants

The objective of this project was to deliver a concise reference do...

Coal Preparation

Technical Market Support

Market acceptance and emphasising the advantages of Australian coals.

Technical Market Support

Mine Site Greenhouse Gas Mitigation

Mitigating greenhouse gas emissions from the production of coal.

Recently Completed Projects

C23052Novel Stone Dust Looping Process For Ventilation Air Methane Abatement

This multi‐phase project is concerned with the mitigation of m...

C27054Optimisation Of A Thermal Flow Reversal Reactor For Ventilation Air Methane Mitigation

Ventilation air methane (VAM) generally accounts for 50-85% of the t...

C28076Selective Absorption Of Methane By Ionic Liquids (SAMIL) - Phase 2 Demonstration In A Packed Bed Reactor

An alternative approach to high temperature oxidation of ventilation...

Mine Site Greenhouse Gas Mitigation

Low Emission Coal Use

Step-change technologies aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Recently Completed Projects

C17060BGasification Of Australian Coals

Four Australian coals were trialled in the Siemens 5 MWth pilot scale ga...

C17060AOxyfuel Technology For Carbon Capture And Storage Critical Clean Coal Technology - Interim Support

The status of oxy-fuel technology for first-generation plant is indicate...

C18007Review Of Underground Coal Gasification

This report consists of a broad review of underground coal gasification,...

Low Emission Coal Use

Mining And The Community

The relationship between mines and the local community.

Recently Completed Projects

C16027Assessing Housing And Labour Market Impacts Of Mining Developments In Bowen Basin Communities

The focus of this ACARP-funded project has been to identify a number...

C22029Understanding And Managing Cumulative Impacts Of Coal Mining And Other Land Uses In Regions With Diversified Economies

The coal industry operates in the context of competing land-uses that sh...

C23016Approval And Planning Assessment Of Black Coal Mines In NSW And Qld: A Review Of Economic Assessment Techniques

This reports on issues surrounding economic assessment and analysis ...

Mining And The Community


National Energy Research,Development & Demonstration Council (NERDDC) reports - pre 1992.

Recently Completed Projects

1609-C1609Self Heating of Spoil Piles from Open Cut Coal Mines

Self Heating of Spoil Piles from Open Cut Coal Mines

1301-C1301Stress Control Methods for Optimised Development...

Stress Control Methods for Optimised Development and Extraction Operations

0033-C1356Commissioned Report: Australian Thermal Coals...

Commissioned Report: Australian Thermal Coals - An Industry Handbook