Burkes Creek mine

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The Burkes Creek mining operation includes both a small opencast mine and an underground mine producing sub-bituminous coal mine near Reefton on the West Coast of the South Island. The underground mine is owned and operated by RJ Banks[1] and the Burkes Creek Coal Party.

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Project Details

Location: Near Reefton, West Coast of the South Island

Coordinates: -42.098254,171.890795

Coalfield: Reefton
Background: The Reefton Coal Company was set up in 1919 to develop the original Burkes Creek mine and the area has been worked by numerous underground operations in the same and other seams. According to an Enzed transport article, Solid Energy acquired the opencast operation in 2004.[2]
In its 2012 Annual Report Solid Energy stated that it would be continuing feasibility assessment for Burkes Creek Opencast.[3]
Current owner: RJ Banks and the Burkes Creek Coal Party operate the mine as a small family concern.[4]
Status: Operating
Production capacity: 5000 tonnes/year
Estimated recoverable reserves: Solid Energy confirmed an estimated inferred resource of 18Mt.[5]
Mining technique: The underground mining is based around shotfiring operations to fragment the coal and then hydraulic operations to convey the coal from the mine.
Type of coal: Sub-bituminous
Solid fuel calorific value (gross) 25.00 MJ/kg (Range for NZ coal 15.25–31.95 MJ/kg)[6]
Market information: Domestic
Environmental and/or health & safety issues: In the aftermath of the Pike River disaster, the New Zealand Cabinet required that safety audits of all coal mines be carried out. This identified areas for improvement that would need to be addressed by the Burkes Creek mine operator before underground mining resumed.[7]

Articles and Resources

Sources

  1. Ministry of Economic Development, "Operating coal mines", Ministry of Economic Development website, accessed March 2012
  2. Enzed Transport, "Coal mining past present and future links with rail development & heritage (West Coast / Canterbury, South Island)", accessed December 2012
  3. Solid Energy, "Solid Energy NZ Ltd Annual Report 2012", accessed December 2012
  4. Ministry of Economic Development, "Operating coal mines", Ministry of Economic Development website, accessed March 2012.
  5. Solid Energy, "Solid Energy NZ Ltd Annual Report 2012", accessed December 2012
  6. Ministry of Economic Development, "New Zealand Energy Data File 2011", accessed December 2012
  7. Department of Labour, "Mine Safety Audit Report - Burkes Creek", accessed December 2012

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