A decision on developing an exploration adit at the central Queensland BHP Saraji mine, similar to the Goonyella exploration project, is expected from the company in October-November this year. BHP's long-term strategic plan for its underground coal resources is to utilise existing highwalls at existing Bowen Basin open cut mines to gain rapid and cost effective access to the coal reserves on its leases.
The first phase of traditional exploration utilising borehole drilling and 2D seismic is being wrapped up in the southern portion of an underground reserve area at Saraji to prove up reserves. Phase two exploration over the northern section is due to commence in March-April. 3D seismic may be utilised to delineate fault structures.