The literature is replete with examples of rangelands communities which have suffered significant impacts from nearby mine operations and their subsequent closure. Increasingly, there is awareness among the international and Australian mining peak bodies for the need to plan for enduring value for peripheral communities that are dependent on nearby mines at their 'core'. We find a greater dependency in one of the case study locations, Leigh Creek, by hinterland communities. In contrast to Leigh Creek, hinterland communities of Roxby Downs are yet to develop as great a dependency on this major centre for services. The reported utilisation of the Port Augusta, (260 km from both centres), highlights the disproportionate costs for accessing services not available in Leigh Creek and Roxby Downs upon residents who are not in paid employment. The impending closure of the Leigh Creek mine and dependency upon Leigh Creek by its hinterland communities requires urgent planning to be undertaken to ensure that the services remain available in Leigh Creek, In the case of Roxby Downs there is time for planning to diversify the economy to ensure it is able to withstand the cyclical nature of the resources cycle.
Robertson, S.A., & Blackwell, B.D. (2015). Remote mining towns on the rangelands: Determining dependency within the hinterland. The Rangeland Journal, 37, 583-598. doi: 10.1071/RJ15046