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New underground coal mine to open in Illinois

World Coal,

Governor Pat Quinn has announced that a new underground coal mine is to be opened in Hamilton County, Illinois.

The White Oak Mine No.1, operated by White Oak Resources LLC, will create approximately 300 construction jobs and 350 permanent jobs once it is in full operation.

It is reported that the company will invest over US$ 400 million in construction of the mine, which is expected to open in late 2012 or early 2013. The mine has a projected production of 7.5 million tpa, and is the first of four new mines that the company has proposed for the area.

The mine’s permit was recently approved by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) Office of Mines and Minerals, who report that Hamilton County will receive US$ 6.2 million in mining royalties during the mine’s first five years. The mine operation will also result in new tax revenues supporting state and local services.

White Oak president, Scott Spears, said: “With these permits now in hand, we look forward to the next steps in the process of building a world class operation that will not only bring high paying jobs to the area, but also bring additional high quality production to the Illinois Basin.”

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