Australian Pacific Coal, on its way to re-commencing underground mining at its Dartbrook mine in New South Wales, Australia, has appointed a new contractor.
In its latest quarterly results released earlier this week, it said Terrequip Mining had replaced former contractor UGM Mining with principal responsibilities for care and maintenance activities at site. The change was to “enhance preliminary site preparation and readiness activities”, the company said.
Australian Pacific Coal became the owner of Dartbrook in 2017 after agreeing a A$30 million ($22 million), plus royalties, deal with Anglo American and Marubeni Coal. The underground thermal coal mine, which includes a coal handling preparation plant and train load out facility, has been on care and maintenance since 2006.
Earlier this year, AusPac made an application to modify Dartbrook Mine’s Development Consent. The modification proposed limited bord and pillar mining in an area of the Kayuga coal seam currently approved for longwall mining. The bord and pillar mining was proposed as an alternative in addition to approved longwall mining activities.
The company said the modification would facilitate the extraction of up to 10 million tonnes of run of mine coal at a maximum production rate of 1.5 million tonnes per year.
The request has since been through a public assessment phase and AusPac is hopeful the relevant New South Wales department will be able to make a determination of the application by October 2018.
In addition to changing the main contractor at Dartbrook, the company said it is continuing discussions with potential mining contractors, equipment suppliers and coal end users to support the recommencement of mining at Dartbrook.