Cyclone Debbie: Coal mines hopeful of reopening soon in wake of storm (Australian Broadcasting Corporation – March 30, 2017)

“The Bowen Basin is one of Australia’s richest coal reserves, with
the region accounting for around half of the world’s seaborne coking
coal supplies, meaning any lengthy disruption to production could
send prices surging.”

A number of central Queensland coal mines operated by BHP Billiton and Glencore remain shut due to torrential rain as ex-Tropical Cyclone Debbie continued to make its way through the state. Production at Glencore’s Collinsville and Newlands coal mines remained suspended, but the company said both are expected to reopen within the next 48 hours.

Glencore said its mines have not suffered any significant damage. “All our people are safe and there has been no damage to our mine infrastructure,” corporate affairs manager Francis De Rosa wrote in an email to ABC News.

BHP Billiton, meanwhile, said its mining remains temporarily suspended at central operations and that the impact on production would be reported in its next quarterly update. “We continue to follow wet weather management plans at our mining operations and Hay Point Coal Terminal,” the company said in an emailed statement.

Analysts said the impact of Cyclone Debbie on production is unlikely to be as great as Cyclone Yasi, which devastated parts of North Queensland in 2011 and wiped out around 20 million tonnes of coking coal production.

Anglo American operates two open cut mines located in the Bowen Basin. The ABC has contacted the company for comment.

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