The history of Hay Point Port, North
The Hay Point Port is a dedicated coal export port. Given that it covers an
area of 6,526ha and in 2011 had a throughput of 32 million tonnes it is the
largest coal export port in the world. It is located a 38km drive south of
Mackay, North Queensland.
During the 1960s there was an open cut coal mining operation established
Goonyella, an area located about 150km south of Mackay. This operation was a
venture by the American company Utah Development Company (UDC) and the
Japanese Mitsubishi Company.
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In 1968 in conjunction with the government of Queensland, UDC began
construction of the port itself. It was completed and operational in late
1971. At that time it was a facility for the sole use of the Central
Queensland Coal Associates (CQCA), and the Hay Point Services Ltd had the
operational contract. In 1975 an additional coal berth was commissioned. To
support operations, port offices were built and accommodation for personnel
were built in the town of Half Tide.
Today there are two terminals at the Hay Point Port – the Dalrymple Bay Coal
Terminal (D.B.C.T) and Hay Point Coal Terminal (H.P.C.T). Both the DBCT and
HPCT facilities have purpose built stock piling yards, rail sidings and off
shore wharves. The offshore wharves allow for deep water loading and the
coal is sent out to the ships on conveyer systems 2 & 4 kilometres out to
The original Hay Point Coal terminal belongs to the Central Queensland Coal
Associates and is operated by Hay Point Services which is a BHP Biliton
company. The HPCT has two berths.
Dalrymple Bay Coal Terminal was established in 1983 at a cost of $250
million. It was established as there were multiple non UDC related coal
mining ventures being starting up and they needed their own wharf access. So
a common-use export facility, allowing multiple users to export from one
site and share operating & infrastructural costs, was established. The
Queensland government leases the terminal out and it is operated by the DBCT
Management company. DBCT has 4 berths.
A dedicated railway line was built separate from the Queensland state
railway and was designed to transport the mined coal from Goonyella to Hay
Point Port. Today this railway line provides integrated services between the
coal mines in the Bowen Basin area and the port and is now owned by the QR