Paul Harvey, chief operating officer of South32, has stated that community and environmental impact assessments have begun at its Dendrobium coking coal mine in New South Wales.
The company, a demerged subsidiary of BHP founded in 2016, has stated a timeframe of four to six years for study and development for Dendrobium, while Appin colliery would undergo gas drainage and ventilation in the next 12 months.
The news follows on from the colliery’s poor performance in the last year due to safety issues related to gas and ventilation. The mine was closed from June to October 2017 to address these issues. The company has asked workers to consider voluntary redundancy while the situation improves.
“We expect to return the Appin colliery to its prior two longwall configuration in the December 2018 quarter, after which we intend to ramp-up Illawarra metallurgical coal production safely and sustainably towards historical rates of more than 8 million tonnes per annum,” the company reported.