COMPANY ACTIVITY

Underground mining likely at Bundi

METROCOAL has increased the inferred resource of its Bundi Project in the Surat Basin of Queensland by 56% to 595 million tonnes of thermal coal and identified an attractive underground mineable resource in the Kogan seam.

Lou Caruana
Underground mining likely at Bundi

The explorer aims to introduce longwall mining to the Surat Basin and is targeting 2 billion tonnes of total resources from its projects in the region by the end of the year.

Seam correlation and continuity has been confirmed by all drilling and the smaller surface footprint of underground mining mitigates many environmental issues.

The company’s preliminary studies on a longwall indicate an annual run-of-mine production of 6.3-6.9Mt with pithead operating costs of $17-$20/t.

A high-level desktop study completed by Mining Consultancy Services has evaluated the resource and has not identified any hazard that cannot be managed using current industry techniques and management practices.

The Bundi Project area is a down dip extension of the Elimatta and Xstrata’s Wandoan mining project areas and now has a total resource of 923Mt.

Further drilling and geological modelling has confirmed the correlation and continuity of the Macalister Upper seam and extended the resource area.

Furthermore, the addition of the Kogan Seam as a workable mining section has seen a substantial addition of tonnages to the resource.

The infill drilling program, which began in February this year, was planned to improve understanding of the resource by increasing resource confidence and tonnage as well as extending the total underground mineable area.

The drilling program has also confirmed a resource in the overlying Kogan seam.

The company said the news was particularly pleasing as it confirmed earlier indications that the Kogan seam was a viable exploration target.

“The seam thickness in the Kogan resource area is between 2.2m and 5.8m thick and presents an attractive mining opportunity,” it said.

The 70 hole drilling program continues.

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