XSTRATA coal is considering developing a 20 million tonnes-a-year coal mine near Wandoan in the Taroom Shire, Queensland.
Initial production of the proposed mine is expected to be in excess of 20 million tonnes per annum (Mtpa) run of mine coal for an expected life of 30 years.
“Wandoan provides a unique opportunity for Xstrat Coal to begin exploring a large and untapped thermal coal resource with ideal characteristics to be used in Integrated Gasification Combined Cycle (IGCC) and other low emission technologies,” Xstrata Coal chief executive Peter Coates said.
The Wandoan Project is proposed to be developed by Xstrata Coal Queensland on behalf of the Wandoan Joint Venture (WJV) comprising Xstrata Coal Queensland Pty Ltd (75%), ICRA (Itochu) Pty Ltd (12.5%) and Sumisho Coal Australia Pty Ltd (12.5%).
First stage of the Wandoan Project will include feasibility studies and the preparation of an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS).
These studies will assist Xstrata Coal to identify and assess potential social, economic and environmental impacts and benefits on a local, regional and state basis.
The EIS will also identify management strategies to mitigate or minimise any identified impacts.
“The EIS will enable Xstrata Coal to determine whether the Project is feasible and to seek mining approval from the Queensland Government,” said Coates.
A decision to proceed with the mine development is not expected before late 2009.