Chinese firms bet big on B.C. coal

Chinese companies have announced investments totaling $1.36 billion to develop two new coal mines in northeast B.C.

Premier Christy Clark meets with mining executives in Beijing Wednesday.



Premier Christy Clark continued her trade mission in China Wednesday with the announcement of a $1.36 billion in investments by Chinese companies to develop two new coal mines in northeast B.C.

One project is the Gething coal property 25 km south of Hudson’s Hope, which has been explored since 1971. The recent resurgence of coal mining in the Peace River region has so far been open-pit operations, with two small mines opened in 2004 and two more in 2006, but the rising price of metallurgical coal has increased interest in underground mining.

Three Chinese companies formed a partnership called the Canadian Kailuan Dehua Mines Co. Ltd. to develop the Gething mine. The partnership announced an investment of $860 million, and estimates the mine can produce two million tonnes of washed coal per year for more than 30 years.

In a conference call with reporters from Beijing Wednesday, Clark said the second project is also in the Peace region, but investors have not yet announced the exact location. Another group of Chinese companies has announced it will invest $500 million in that mine.

The Gething project applied for B.C. environmental assessment in 2006 and also faces First Nations and community consultation. The project application described alternatives for bringing the coal out from the mine site near the W.A.C. Bennett Dam, using trucks on forest service roads or barges down Williston reservoir to connect to highways and the CN rail line.

Jobs, Tourism and Innovation Minister Pat Bell first announced the Chinese investments in March. The investors estimate the Gething project will create 773 long-term direct jobs.

Clark said she spoke with Chinese company executives about the major investments office being set up by the B.C. government to speed up approvals for projects like the mines.

Just Posted

Rapping mom busts rhymes for Castlegar rec centre kid’s drop-in

Funny video with important message about importance of service

New system to keep Nakusp-area snowmobilers, caribou from meeting

GPS tracking keeps caribou safe while opening up the backcountry for sledding

Kootenay Lake ferry labour dispute ends with ratified agreement

The deal was approved by 83 per cent of members

November in West Kootenay saw only third of normal precipitation

Stalled weather system lingered over region

Police watchdog exonerates RCMP in Bonnington death

Officer’s shots were justified, report says

VIDEO: Boys help rescue Cariboo bear cub

The cub, weighing just 24lbs, has been taken to wildlife sanctuary in Northwest B.C. for the winter

‘Things haven’t changed enough:’ Ecole Polytechnique anniversary prompts reflection

Fourteen women were fatally shot by a gunman at the Montreal school on Dec. 6, 1989

Bear raids freezer, gorges on Island family’s Christmas baking

Hungry bruin virtually ignored meat and fish, focused, instead, on the sweets

B.C. pharmaceutical company’s stocks double in value after successful lupus drug trial

More than 40 per cent of patients using voclosporin saw improvements in kidney function

Second warning on romaine lettuce from California region as another E. coli case reported

Two cases of E. coli have been reported in relation to the illness in the U.S.

WorkSafeBC investigating serious incident at Kootenay Boundary landfill

Medical incident shut down the McKelvey Creek landfill Friday morning

Residents in B.C. city could face 133% tax hike in ‘worst case’ lawsuit outcome: report

An average home could see a tax increase of $2,164 in one year

B.C. Transit finds 28 used fareboxes online, saves $300,000

‘Someone joked maybe we can buy used fareboxes on eBay,’ CEO says

Many of Canada’s working poor can’t afford lawyers, don’t qualify for legal aid

One lawyer says many people earn too much to qualify for legal aid, but not enough to really live on

Most Read