Unsure future for Canadian mine

CANADA’s Nova Scotia provincial government has asked prospective bidders - Xstrata Coal, Cape Breton Coal Energy and Donkin Resources – to provide more information on how they plan to resurrect the Donkin underground mine before deciding its fate.

Donna Schmidt

The government said it wanted more time to decide whether or not to reopen Donkin Mine in Cape Breton County, Nova Scotia, according to local media outlets. An announcement was originally due last month.

Donkin still has some 300Mt of coal remaining underground with 12 major coal seams ranging in thickness from 0.9 meters to 2.1m.

“We’re asking for a little more analysis [to] be done and we’ll be making an announcement real soon,” cabinet minister Richard Hurlburt said. “This is a massive project and we want to make sure we’re making the right decision.”

Donkin mine was closed almost 20 years ago.

A group tried to reopen the mine in 2003, but were unsuccessful due to finances. The government announced last year that it planned to seek out a private operator for the mine.