At the Keeping Place ceremony, from left: Barada Barna Aboriginal Corporation vice chair and director Merv Riley, treasurer Graham Budby, director Kevin Brown, Peabody Coppabella Moorvale Joint Venture mine's senior environmental advisor Sophie Bereyne and general manager Mark Turner, and Barada Barna Aboriginal Corporation's chairwoman Luarna Walsh, secretary Jade Smith, director Nicholas Brown
At the Keeping Place ceremony, from left: Barada Barna Aboriginal Corporation vice chair and director Merv Riley, treasurer Graham Budby, director Kevin Brown, Peabody Coppabella Moorvale Joint Venture mine's senior environmental advisor Sophie Bereyne and general manager Mark Turner, and Barada Barna Aboriginal Corporation's chairwoman Luarna Walsh, secretary Jade Smith, director Nicholas Brown

Mine site preserves artefacts with ‘Keeping Place’

SCAR trees found on Barada Barna country at a Queensland mine site have been relocated to now stand proudly at its entrance.

They foreground a major artwork painted by Coppabella State School students with the guidance of Barada Barna.

It depicts the Barada Barna's totem, the colourful giant carpet snake.

Coppabella State School students Keeley Ball and Laura van Tienhoven with Coppabella Mine senior environmental advisor Sophie Bereyne (centre). Picture: Peabody Australia
Coppabella State School students Keeley Ball and Laura van Tienhoven with Coppabella Mine senior environmental advisor Sophie Bereyne (centre). Picture: Peabody Australia

Peabody Coppabella Mine general manager Mark Turner said the project was the result of a forged strong and respectful relationship between the mine and Barada Barna over the past decade.

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He said they were both proud and excited to unveil the "Keeping Place" which would protect culturally significant Indigenous sites and artefacts.

Artwork depicting the Barada Barna's totem, the carpet snake or 'Munda', at Keeping Place, Coppabella Mine. Picture: Peabody Australia
Artwork depicting the Barada Barna's totem, the carpet snake or 'Munda', at Keeping Place, Coppabella Mine. Picture: Peabody Australia

"We're determined that this special place not only preserves scar trees but also serves as an important sign of respect and a daily reminder to our employees and visitors that we are working on Barada Barna country," Mr Turner said.

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Barada Barna Aboriginal Corporation chairwoman Luarna Walsh said the Coppabella Keeping Place was a "genuine acknowledgment" of country.

From left: Barada Barna Aboriginal Corporation vice chair and director Merv Riley, treasurer Graham Budby, director Kevin Brown, Peabody Coppabella Moorvale Joint Venture mine's senior environmental advisor Sophie Bereyne and general manager Mark Turner, and Barada Barna Aboriginal Corporation's chairwoman Luarna Walsh, secretary Jade Smith, director Nicholas Brown and director Phil Fisher. Pictu
From left: Barada Barna Aboriginal Corporation vice chair and director Merv Riley, treasurer Graham Budby, director Kevin Brown, Peabody Coppabella Moorvale Joint Venture mine's senior environmental advisor Sophie Bereyne and general manager Mark Turner, and Barada Barna Aboriginal Corporation's chairwoman Luarna Walsh, secretary Jade Smith, director Nicholas Brown and director Phil Fisher. Pictu

"It shows the respect coming from the company and the relationship that we've had with Peabody and Coppabella from the mine's inception to where it is now," Ms Walsh said.

"We have over 30 Bowen Basin mines on our country and, out of all the mines, I've got say that this one's the most impressive welcome site.

Coppabella State School students Kiara Bannister, Amy van Tienhoven and Addalyne Newman working on the giant totem snake. Picture: Peabody Australia
Coppabella State School students Kiara Bannister, Amy van Tienhoven and Addalyne Newman working on the giant totem snake. Picture: Peabody Australia

"It really stands out and maybe if other mining companies see it, it might prompt them to pick their game up.

"Coppabella and Peabody are way ahead of the game."

The Coppabella Mine is located along the Peak Downs Highway in Nebo.

 

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