Canadian authorities seek Raven submissions

THE British Columbia Environmental Assessment Office has opened a public comment period and is accepting input regarding the Raven underground coal project on Vancouver Island.
Canadian authorities seek Raven submissions Canadian authorities seek Raven submissions Canadian authorities seek Raven submissions Canadian authorities seek Raven submissions Canadian authorities seek Raven submissions

Drilling at Compliance Energy's Raven project.

Donna Schmidt

The agency and property owner Compliance Energy said Tuesday that this comment period allows for remarks relating to the owner’s responses to an initial comment period held in May and June.

“From May 18, 2011 to June 27, 2011, the BC Environmental Assessment Office and Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency accepted comments from the public on the draft application information requirements document, which is also the federal environmental impact statement guidelines,” Compliance said.

“The provincial and federal governments have required that Compliance Coal respond to matters raised by the public that relate to the information requirements.”

Public input for this second of three open periods must be received by November 27.

Following the deadline, the CEAA and the BC EAO expect to finalize the AIR/EIS guidelines and issue a report, at which time Compliance Coal can finalize its preparation of applications for environmental certification and approval.

CEC’s primary holding includes 31,000 hectares on Vancouver Island, where Raven is located. The company holds a 60% interest with the remaining 40% owned by Itochu subsidiary I-Comox Coal and by LG International Investments (Canada).

In May, the company announced positive results from its feasibility study for Raven.

It filed a National Instrument 43-101 (NI 43-101) compliant independent review, conducted by Colorado consultant Pincock, Allen and Holt, to replace an earlier preliminary report completed by the firm in 2010.

The project’s lifespan is expected to extend about 17 years including 12 months for construction, a mining period of 15.5 years and a site reclamation period at the end.

Raven is expected to be mined by the room and pillar method, utilizing conveyor transportation to the surface.

Average tonnage processed on site will be 1.93 million tonnes raw, resulting in a total annual production of 850,000t of saleable semi-soft metallurgical and thermal middlings coal over the mining term.

Processed production will range from 650,000t to 1.1Mt per annum after initial start-up, and the final product will be transported to Port Alberni on Vancouver Island’s west coast for market to Asian coal markets, most likely Japan and Korea.

Raven’s construction is expected to begin in 2012 following the receipt of permits, and construction and development is anticipated to take about one year. First shipment from the complex is projected for late 2013.