Canada

Fording River Mine

Click for more information

Categories

Overview

Mine TypeOpen Pit
StatusActive
Commodities
  • Coal (metallurgical)
Mining Method
  • Truck & Shovel / Loader
Production Start... Lock
Mine Life... Lock
SnapshotThe Fording River mine site consists of approximately 19,800 hectares of coal lands, including four operating surface coal pits along with several areas planned for surface mine development held under multiple contiguous coal leases and licences.

The Fording River Extension Project (FRX), adjacent and south of existing operations, is expected to provide a new source of mineable steelmaking coal. FRX proposes to utilize existing infrastructure and equipment and is intended to extend mining at Fording River for decades, allowing for continued social and economic contributions to the local and regional economies. In August 2020, FRX was designated into the federal assessment process under the Impact Assessment Act, and a favourable outcome from the environmental assessment process is required for the project to proceed.

Owners

SourceSource
CompanyInterestOwnership
POSCO International Corp. 3 % Indirect
Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corp. 20 % Indirect
Teck Resources Ltd. 77 % Indirect
In November 2023, Teck Resources entered into separate agreements to sell steelmaking coal business to Glencore Plc (Glencore), Nippon Steel Corporation (NSC) and POSCO (the Steelmaking Coal Business Unit Transactions).

On January 1, 2024, in connection with the Steelmaking Coal Business Unit Transactions Teck Resources completed an internal reorganization of the steelmaking coal business unit to align all steelmaking coal assets, including Teck Coal Partnership and Elkview Mining Limited Partnership, under a newly organized Elk Valley Mining Limited Partnership (EVM LP).

On January 3, 2024, Teck completed the NSC and POSCO Transactions, with NSC and POSCO acquiring a 20% and 3% interest, respectively, in EVM LP. Following the NSC and POSCO Transactions, EVM LP now holds a 100% interest in all of the steelmaking coal operations and Teck holds a 77% interest in EVM LP, with NSC and POSCO holding the remaining 20% and 3%, respectively.

Contractors

Lock

- subscription is required.

Deposit type

  • Sedimentary

Summary:

Fording River Operations are located within the Elk Valley Coalfields. The coal measures are situated within the Upper Jurassic to Lower Cretaceous Kootenay Group sediments.

From earliest to latest, the Kootenay Group includes:
• Morrissey Formation: sandstones; subdivided into the Weary Ridge and Moose Mountain Members; 20–80 m in thickness;
• Mist Mountain Formation: interbedded sandstone, siltstone, mudstone, shale and thin to thick seams of bituminous to semi-anthracite coal; 450–550 m in thickness;
• Elk Formation: interbedded sandstone, siltstone, mudstone, shale and locally thick beds of chertpebble conglomerate and thin seams of high volatile bituminous coal; 350–450 m in thickness.

The Mist Mountain Formation contains approximately 25 coal seams consisting of low to high volatile bituminous coal. The coal currently or planned to be mined at the FRO are contained on Eagle, Castle and Turnbull mountains, and on the northeast flank of the Greenhills Range. Current operations are located in the Eagle, Swift, and Lake Mountain pits.

Within the coal measures, there are three structurally-separated coalfields, the Elk Valley, Crowsnest, and Flathead coalfields. The Elk Valley coalfield is located within the Alexander Creek and Greenhills synclines, which are separated by a normal fault. The western edge of the Mist Mountain Formation, and therefore the distribution of the Elk Valley coalfield, is controlled by the Bourgeau Fault. To the east of this fault, the Greenhills syncline plunges to the north, and its eastern limb is truncated by the northtrending normal Erickson fault. East of the Erickson fault is the Alexander Creek syncline, which is in turn cut by the Ewin Pass thrust fault (Ryan, 2001).

The coal seams in both synclines are typically fragmented and sheared. Thicker seams are generally lower in the section, tend to host major thrusts, and therefore are frequently extensively sheared (Ryan, 2001).

Greenhills Syncline
The east limb of the asymmetric Greenhills syncline dips westerly at 15–25°, except in areas near the Erickson Fault, where 45–55° dips are common. The west limb exhibits much steeper dips, commonly in the 35–45° range. The Greenhills Syncline plunges northward (340–350°), at less than 5°, and then thins out and seems to end to the north in the area of the Osborne Creek Depression (Teck Coal, 2011).

Erickson Fault
The Erickson Fault, which locally runs along the base of the Greenhills Range, west of the Fording River, is one of the major regional faults. From south to north, this westerly dipping (40–70°) normal fault brings Mist Mountain strata progressively into contact with Rundle, Rock Mountain, Spray River, Fernie and Morrissey strata. The downthrown block is to the west (Teck Coal, 2011).

Near the south end of Lake Mountain, the Erickson Faults begins to “splay” into two zones. The main fault runs along the eastern margin of Lake Mountain, and the subsidiary fault runs to the west and appears to thin out and end northward. The steep northward dip exhibited in the Lake Mountain strata could be due to influence from these flanking “splays” of the fault. The flat-lying region to the north of Lake Mountain (Osborne Creek Depression area) is completely void of outcrop, and the Erickson Fault has not been traced either through or to the north of this area (Teck Coal, 2011).

MINERALIZATION
The Mist Mountain Formation depth of burial ranges from surface exposures to >1,500 m. The coal measures on the FRO property contain bituminous grade coal seams with varying volatile matter contents. The coal quality varies with depth of burial and location along the strike of the deposit. Aggregate coal thickness on Eagle Mountain can reach more than 70 m in thickness in the nose of synclines and anticlines. Approximately eight medium volatile seams that are used in hard coking coals (HCC) are currently being mined in Eagle Pit. In Swift pit, seven low to medium volatile seams are currently being mined. Swift seams are used in both hard coking coals and semi-hard coking coal products. In the Lake Mountain pit, a wide variety (040 to 120 seams) of low to high volatile seams are mined, which go into both hard coking and semi-hard coking coal products.

FRO produces the following coal products:
• Hard coking coal (HCC): coke strength after reaction (CSR) 64+;
• Semi-hard coking coal (SHCC): 55 CSR 63.

Reserves

Lock

- subscription is required.

Mining Methods

Lock

- subscription is required.

Comminution

Crushers and Mills

Lock

- subscription is required.

Processing

Lock

- subscription is required.

Production

CommodityUnits202320222021202020192018201720162015
Coal (metallurgical) Mt  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe7.997.97.37.4
All production numbers are expressed as clean coal.

Operational metrics

Metrics202320222021202020192018201720162015
Annual production capacity  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe9.5 Mt of clean coal9.5 Mt of clean coal9.5 Mt of clean coal9.5 Mt of clean coal9.5 Mt of clean coal

Production Costs

Commodity production costs have not been reported.

Financials

Units2024
Capital expenditures (planned) M CAD  ....  Subscribe

Heavy Mobile Equipment

Lock

- subscription is required.

EV - Electric

Personnel

Mine Management

Job TitleNameProfileRef. Date
....................... Subscription required ....................... Subscription required Subscription required Mar 18, 2024
....................... Subscription required ....................... Subscription required Subscription required Mar 15, 2024
....................... Subscription required ....................... Subscription required Subscription required Mar 18, 2024
....................... Subscription required ....................... Subscription required Subscription required Mar 15, 2024
....................... Subscription required ....................... Subscription required Subscription required Mar 15, 2024
....................... Subscription required ....................... Subscription required Subscription required Mar 15, 2024

Lock

- subscription is required.