Citing a lack of progress on the application, the British Columbia Environmental Assessment Office sent an April 4 letter to Compliance Coal terminating a long-dormant environmental review for the Raven underground coal mine project.
The letter said this termination decision does not preclude the company from filing a new application for the project.
Parent Compliance Energy announced in June 2015 that Itochu Corp. of Japan had completed its withdrawal from the Comox Joint Venture, which covered this coal mining project, and that LG International Corp. of Korea (LGi) had also informed the company of its planned withdrawal from the project.
Compliance purchased the Vancouver Island coal rights in 2005 and established a joint venture with Itochu and LGi. The economic feasibility study was completed in 2009 for the development of a modest underground coal project projected to be in operation within three years. The now-terminated Environmental Assessment process was entered into in 2009.
The Raven reserve holds a semi–soft coking coal resource that the company has estimated at 72 million tonnes in the measured and indicated category, as well as 59 million tonnes of inferred resources. Its location puts it much nearer to a deep water port than the major surface mines in British Columbia that produce met coal for the Pacific Rim market. In a 2009 pre-application filed at the BC EAO, the company proposed to develop a new underground coal mine with a production capacity of up to 1.88 million tonnes of a combination of raw and clean coal per year. The expected mine life is 17 years.