News release

Province Accepts Proposals for Surface Coal Resources

NATURAL RESOURCES--Province Accepts Proposals for Surface Coal Resources


The province has accepted proposals from three companies to explore, develop and reclaim four areas, or claim blocks, in the Sydney coalfield.

The successful companies are Thomas Brogan and Sons Construction Company, Coastal Construction and Excavating Limited and Pioneer Coal Limited.

Thomas Brogan and Sons and Coastal Construction are now entitled to apply for exclusive mineral rights to coal lying within the Birch Grove and Boularderie Island claim blocks, respectively. Pioneer Coal is eligible to pursue exclusive mineral rights to coal within both the Point Aconi and Broughton resource blocks.

"These companies have demonstrated that they are technically and financially able to conduct their proposed projects and have corporate experience in the local area," said Natural Resources Minister Richard Hurlburt. "We look forward to working with them as they move to the next steps."
"Cape Breton still has significant coal resources, which can provide important economic benefits to our communities and companies such as the Cape Breton Central Nova Scotia Railway," said Energy Minister Cecil Clarke. "These proposals support our commitment to develop these valuable resources in a responsible way - a commitment we made to Nova Scotians in our energy strategy, Seizing the Opportunity."

In addition to making applications for the mineral rights, the companies must also obtain land access rights and adhere to all regulatory requirements, which include securing industrial approvals and environmental assessments.

Several of these sites require reclamation work to restore lands impacted by decades of underground mining operations.

Six companies responded to a call for proposals issued in December 2003.

FOR BROADCAST USE:

The province has accepted proposals from three companies to explore, develop and reclaim four areas in the Sydney coalfield.

The successful companies are Thomas Brogan and Sons Construction Company, Coastal Construction and Excavating Limited and Pioneer Coal Limited.

The companies must apply for the mineral rights, as well as obtain land access rights and adhere to all environmental and regulatory requirements.

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Contact:

Mary Anna Jollymore
Natural Resources 902-424-2354 E-mail: