Phoenix Park plans to clear land for hay

Phoenix Park wants to expand its operation.
Phoenix Park wants to expand its operation.

A big cattle station just outside Katherine wants to clear a further 504 hectares to grow more hay.

Phoenix Park station has lodged a development application to clear more land to grow its business.

The 3443ha hectare property is primarily used for cattle feedlotting, hay growing and export yards.

Mining magnate Gina Rinehart’s Hancock Prospecting Pty Ltd bought Phoenix Park, west of Katherine on Florina Road, in 2016.

At the time, Ms Rinehart Hancock Prospecting chairwoman, Gina Rinehart described the purchase as a strategic acquisition , giving them the ability to supply cattle throughout  the year, including during the wet season, to ensure reliability of supply to markets.

Phoenix Park has a large cattle feedlot and handling facility with 30,000 head capacity, plus four pivot- irrigated 40-ha cropping blocks, 750ha of unirrigated cropping land and extensive cool room and freezer infrastructure.

Gina Rinehart's Hancock Prospecting bought Phoenix Park two years ago.

Gina Rinehart's Hancock Prospecting bought Phoenix Park two years ago.

The value of the proposed clearing works is $100,000.

Comments on the application close on September 19.

The application states 1062ha has already been cleared some years in the past.

It is intended to utilise the new areas for wet season hay production, the application says.

The owners plan to begin work in March next year to begin clearing operations which “would involve bulldozers and chaining of trees and shrubs which would then be left in-situ until grubbing operations are commenced”.

“This property has a proven record of managing the farming activities over a period of more than 40 years and has the resources to ensure that all steps required to undertake the clearing in an environmentally sensitive manner can be employed,” the application states.

“The proposed clearing will be used for agricultural production which has obvious benefits for the NT economy and the Katherine region, including employment opportunities. The intention for this development is to continue to improve the property in a staged and environmentally sensitive manner in order to increase hay and cattle production.

“It should be noted that this property has been successfully farmed for over 40 years and now provides an extremely valuable service to the cattle industry as an export yard facility.”

Comments on applications are made to the NT Department of Infrastructure, Planning and Logistics.

An online link to the application, which includes a section for comments, can be found here.