TerraCom has hit back at environmentalist calls for the Queensland government to block its acquisition of the Blair Athol coal mine from Rio Tinto.
The Lock the Gate Alliance, an anti-coal campaign group, recently said it had written to Queensland state ministers asking them to prevent the AUS$1 sale, arguing that TerraCom “is in a distressed state financially due to its huge debt.”
“In addition, TerraCom has no demonstrated experience or capacity to rehabilitate large-scale open cut coal mines, such as Blair Athol, which is a complex, very high-risk site,” said Lock the gate’s Mine Rehabilitation Reform Campaign Coordinator, Rick Humphries.
In response, TerraCom said that it has “the financial capability to operate the mine and deliver its many expected benefits to the community and to government. The company has the strong backing from its financiers to enable the Blair Athol mine to successfully re-open.”
It also added that its “historic losses” were typical for an exploration and mining company going through a development phase.
On mine rehabilitation, the company defended the AUS$80 million financial assurance that it will provide to the state to cover rehabilitation commitments, accusing those questioning the adequacy of that amount as being “unqualified and ill-informed.
“TerraCom will meet all of its obligations in relation to the conditions of operation for the mine as part of the state government approval process,” said TerraCom. “The company will pro-actively work with the government and stakeholders on agreeing the final land use and closure plan for the Blair Athol mine site as soon as possible.
Edited by Jonathan Rowland.
Read the article online at: https://www.worldcoal.com/coal/15072016/terracom-hits-back-at-critics-2016-2030/