BLM considers Utah reserve sale

THE US Bureau of Land Management is considering a sale of more than 40 million tons of Utah reserves, but one potential leaseholder has said there is no future on the cards for the deposit.
BLM considers Utah reserve sale BLM considers Utah reserve sale BLM considers Utah reserve sale BLM considers Utah reserve sale BLM considers Utah reserve sale


Donna Schmidt

The BLM has scheduled a public meeting on August 13 at its Price field office to accept comments on the fair market value of 42.2Mt of reserves in Dry Canyon, located near Helper. It will also review possible concerns about the environmental implications.

The Dry Canyon tract, which includes the Aberdeen, Kennilworth and D seam beds, ranges between six and 10 feet in thickness and contains high-volatile A/B bituminous product, according to BLM documentation.

In a federal register notice, BLM said that Murray Energy subsidiary UtahAmerican Energy had submitted an application for the coal lease on the property, which is located next to its now idled Aberdeen operation.

“The company [UtahAmerican] plans to mine the coal as an extension from their existing Aberdeen mine, if the lease is obtained,” BLM said.

While Murray Energy business development and external affairs vice-president Rob Murray did confirm to ILN> that the company had submitted a coal use application, he said it was “quite some time ago”

“[We do] not have any plans whatsoever to develop a new mine there or reopen the shuttered Aberdeen mine,” he said.

“Aberdeen remains to be closed and we do not have any plans to reopen it.”

In accordance with federal coal regulations, a public meeting to solicit input must be held by the BLM no less than 30 days before the publication of a sale notice. The gathering is intended to evaluate factors related to the sale, including the fair market value appraisal and maximum economic recovery.