Canterbury Coal shines in full year production report
Bathurst Resources’ Canterbury Coal mine bettered its target production of 100,000 tonnes for the year.
The site produced 22,028 tonnes in the three months to June, an increase of 51 per cent over the same period last year, taking the 12-month total to 101,048 tonnes compared to the 2016 total of 61,000 tonnes.
The company says the site will produce more than 150,000 tonnes during the next financial year.
The operation has emerged as a major producing asset for Bathurst since being purchased in 2014.
Bathurst attributed a rise in demand from the local dairy sector as the leading driver for the increased production numbers throughout the past 12 months.
It has progressively upgraded the mining fleet at the operation alongside continued development of the mine to cope with the demand.
During the June quarter, Bathurst secured a major supply contract from the Canterbury site to what is understood to be Fonterra’s Darfield plant.
The agreement will see supply of up to 65,000 tonnes each year, with an escalation option, for up to 10 years from the mine.
Bathurst says the contract underpins the further development and scaling of the mine which is strategically located to the Canterbury market.
The company moved 211,073 bank cubic metres of overburden during the quarter. It moved a total of 824,187 BCM through the 12 months to June.
Coal production at the Takitimu opencast mine in Southland during the June quarter resulted in the company accomplishing its full-year plan for the site.
The programmed reduced production for the year totalled 203,031 tonnes. The site produced 303,000 tonnes the year before.
It produced 44,628 tonnes in the three months to June, a 25 per cent reduction from 59,201 tonnes produced during the same period last year.
Stripping has progressed into the Black Dimond block during the June quarter. The first coal to come from the extension is expected in the first quarter of the next financial year.
Coal will continue to be mined from the Northern East of the Coaldale block, which Bathurst says has performed better than modelled.
Bathurst stripped 460,036 BCM during the June quarter. It shifted 1,763,424 BCM through the full year.
The mine takes advantage of the reduced demand from the dairy sector during winter to get ahead of the spring surge in coal supply. The company says a significant amount of rehabilitation has been done during the past year with land being returned to pasture.
With the pending purchase of the Sullivan coal mining licence, Bathurst has completed an update of the overall geologic model of the Denniston assets. The model is being evaluated to enhance the Denniston integrated mine plan.
The Escarpment mine remained in care and maintenance during the quarter.
A court date has been set for the claim raised by L&M Coal Holdings against Bathurst in respect to the Buller Coal project acquisition. The hearing is set to start on 12 February for two weeks.