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Angus Place coal mine placed under care and maintenance

Angus Place coal mineAngus Place coal mine near Lithgow is being placed under ‘care and maintenance’ by owners Centennial Coal.

The change will take affect from November with around 270 staff affected.

It is expected that approximately 100 members of the existing Angus Place workforce would be redeployed to Centennial’s Clarence mine and Springvale under the proposed expansion.

In a statement the company said, “…a proportion of the Angus Place workforce would be relocated to (nearby) Springvale, where the plan would be to ‘ramp-up’ Springvale – increasing production, improving productivity and reducing costs, while also seeking to minimise the number of redundancies. This is awaiting formal Joint Venture approval.”

“In order to achieve this, the Angus Place longwall and two development crews and equipment would need to be redeployed to Springvale. The transfer of the Angus Place longwall and development crews will result in increased production, and accordingly, no loss of production during the traditional five week longwall changeover periods usually experienced every 7-8 months at Springvale.  In effect, a second longwall will deliver continuous longwall coal from Springvale,” the statement said.

“This has been an extremely difficult decision, with Centennial committed to diligently working through a process that will sensitively support those impacted.  Unfortunately, the decision is essential if the Joint Venture is to sustain its competitiveness following the reduction in domestic coal demand in the Western Region as a result of the suspension of operations at Wallerawang Power Station, and lower export prices flowing from the currently over-supplied export thermal coal market.”

“While on ‘care & maintenance’, Angus Place will continue to meet safety and environmental regulations and the site will be appropriately maintained to enable a reopening when the Springvale reserves are exhausted (in 2023) or earlier if market conditions improve.”

Both Springvale and Angus Place are in the process of renewing State planning approvals, with consents anticipated in 2015.






28 October 2014

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