The Crowsnest Pass Coal Mining Ltd. (CPCM) will be starting exploration in the Coal Creek area this summer after receiving a notice of work late last week.
CPCM President, Barry Lavin said that the chances of exploration turning into a mine are uncertain, but that the company is eager to see whether there is any coal in Coal Creek.
The exploration will consist of 11 drill holes with an average depth of 200 metres and the construction of two adits.
Lavin said that once that notice of work is approved CPCM will start allowing contracts to go through.
“Most importantly is the drilling contract. We also need technical and laboratory contracts to analyze the coal,” he said.
They will also need to prepare 3.3 hectares of land for drilling.
By opening up old roads through the area, CPCM is hoping to have as little impact on the area as possible.
Lavin said that if exploration is successful it would take several years for CPCM to set up a mining operation.
“We want to set up a modest mine that reflects the community,” he said. “We are progressive and engaging because that is the modern way. The community and the mine are not separate. There are times when the mine will need the community’s support and there are times when the community will look to the mine in times of economic struggle.”
If CPCM establishes a coal project at Coal Creek they will use underground mining, not open pit mining like the other mines in the Elk Valley.
CPCM is owned by GRM, a Singapore-based company, who is interested in the metallurgical coal for their coking coal plant in India.