Anglo American turns first sod at BC met coal project expansion

15th August 2013

By: Henry Lazenby

Creamer Media Deputy Editor: North America


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TORONTO ( – Global diversified mining major Anglo American on Thursday turned the first sod on the Trend-Roman project, an opencut expansion for Trend mine, near Tumbler Ridge, in north-east British Columbia (BC).

BC Energy and Mines Minister Bill Bennett, joined by Anglo American CEO Mark Cutifani and metallurgical coal CEO Seamus French, visited the operation on Thursday, where management, First Nations partners and government officials celebrated starting construction on the water management infrastructure. The BC government granted the Mines Act permit amendment for the project on August 7.

This was Cutifani’s first visit to the Canadian coal operations since his appointment as Anglo American's CEO. He said the Trend-Roman expansion would extend the life of the existing Trend operation by 16 years and introduce the most innovative environmental protection strategies ever seen in the region.

"The approval of the Roman project's first phase is an important milestone in our strategic plans to grow our metallurgical coal output in Canada, with the completed expansion producing up to 2.5-million tonnes of metallurgical coal a year and employing up to 450 people," Cutifani said.

He added that Anglo American would be the first company in BC to set aside 1 852 ha of its tenures to protect caribou habitat. The company would also make a $2.56-million contribution towards the BC government’s ‘Peace Northern Caribou’ plan.

"In another first, we will soon begin construction on the only selenium water treatment facility in the north-east of BC," Cutifani said.

French pointed out that detailed design of a mine plan, which would secure the future employment of the existing Trend workforce and provide opportunities to First Nation community members and the Tumbler Ridge community, was already under way.

"When we acquired 100% of the Peace River operation in late 2011, a major attraction for Anglo American was the potential to unlock additional resources through future mine developments. At the same time, we have lifted productivity at the Trend mine, increasing production by more than 50% and delivering the best half-year production ever seen, in the first six months of 2013,” French said.

Anglo American entered into, and was also finalising, economic benefit agreements with the West Moberly First Nations, McLeod Lake Indian Band, Halfway River First Nation and the Saulteau First Nations.

The miner expects the second phase of the project to be permitted by the end of the year and to complete the Roman expansion by the first quarter of 2014.

Edited by Creamer Media Reporter


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