Whitehaven sets itself to rebound in 2022

Whitehaven Coal

Image: Whitehaven Coal

Whitehaven Coal continues to manage longwall issues at Narrabri coal mine in New South Wales, while the Maules Creek mine excelled according to the company’s September quarter report.

Narrabri produced 1.5 million tonnes of run-of-mine (ROM) coal for the quarter, 7 per cent down on the September 2020 quarter.

Whitehaven managing director and chief executive officer Paul Flynn said this was still encouraging as the mine prepares to move from longwall 109 to 110 in November.

“After a challenging period at Narrabri, we are readying for the longwall changeout ahead of a more productive second half,” Flynn said.

Longwall production will recommence at Narrabri in December, while a geotechnical assessment of panel 110B will undergo geotechnical assessment for future operations.

Maules Creek produced 2.9 million tonnes of ROM coal in the September quarter for a 49 per cent jump on the same period in 2020.

This reflected the mine’s overburden movement last year, while new work areas were developed.

As Whitehaven’s mining licence at Maules Creek allows for 13 million tonnes of ROM coal per calendar year, only 2.6 million tonnes will be permitted for the December quarter.

“However, with healthy levels of coal stocks, sales during the December quarter will continue to be strong,” Whitehaven stated.

The company produced 5.2 million tonnes of ROM coal for the September quarter, managing coal sales of 4.6 million tonnes.

Flynn also acknowledged the Federal approval of the Vickery coal mine extension project on September 16.

“(It was) the culmination of an exhaustive process of technical evaluation and stakeholder consultation spanning five years,” he said.

“While we maintain our cautious approach to capital allocation, this is a critical milestone in our development pipeline that offers us optionality.”

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