Aberpergwm Coal Mine

From Global Energy Monitor

Aberpergwm Coal Mine is an underground coal mine owned and operated by Energybuild in Neath Port Talbot, Wales, United Kingdom.[1][2]

In January 2022, an expansion to mine an additional 40 million tonnes of coal over the next 20 years was approved, however, environmentalists are currently pursuing legal action against its operation.[3][4] It is unclear if the mine is currently operating.

Location

The satellite image below shows the exact location of the coal mine in Neath Port Talbot, Wales, United Kingdom.

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Background

The site at Aberpergwm has been worked since 1811 as a series of drift mines, but full commercial working didn't begin sometime in the 1860s. In 1996, the mine was reopened by local investors Anthracite Mining Ltd; they were, in turn, bought out by UK-based Energybuild in 2011.

Energybuild was granted a conditional mining license in 2016 to extract up to 40 million tonnes of over the 20 years.[5] According to reports, the company claimed it would mine 7.3 million tonnes over the life of the mine, at a rate of about 350,000 tonnes a year.[6]

Environmental Opposition

In March 2023, the Coal Action Network brought a judicial review against the Welsh Government and UK Coal Authority, asking for the mining license to be revoked because the Welsh government's carbon reduction targets weren't sufficiently considered when granting the license.[7] However, it was ruled that both authorities acted within the law.[4] In it's own defense, a spokesperson from the Welsh government adds that although the government remains committed to the climate crisis, they do not have the powers to make a decision in the case of Aberpergwm as this license pre-dates their powers on coal licensing.[8]

The Coal Action Network appealed the decision in May 2023. As of October 2023, a final response is pending.[4]

Mine Details

  • Operator: Energybuild[1]
  • Owner: Energybuild[1]
  • Location: Neath Port Talbot, Wales County, United Kingdom
  • Coordinates: 51.7408, -3.6443 (exact)
  • Mine Status: Operating
  • Start Year: 1811[9]
  • Production Capacity (Mtpa): 0.23
  • Total Reserves (Mt):
  • Coal Type: Anthracite[1]
  • Mine Type: Underground[1]
  • Mine Size (Km2):
  • Workforce Size:
  • Source of Financing:

Expansion Details

  • Status: Approved
  • Capacity: 2 million tonnes per annum[3] or 0.35 mtpa[6]
  • Start Year: TBD
  • Employment: 160[6]

Articles and Resources

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 "Operations", Energybuild website, Accessed October 2023.
  2. Stacy Irish, "USA's Walter Energy restarts production at UK met coal mine," Fastmarkets, 2 January 2014
  3. 3.0 3.1 Aberpergwm colliery given go-ahead to mine 40 million tonnes despite Welsh Government disapproval, Wales Online, January 27, 2022
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 "Hope alive for Aberpergwm with appeal acceptance", Coal Action Network, 17 August 2023.
  5. Re: Aberpergwm Colliery; License for expansion of existing mine, Richard Buxton Solicitors, 2 March 2022.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 Tommy Greene, Wales coalmine extension may soon be approved despite Cop26 pledges, Guardian, December 24, 2021
  7. "Campaigners lose bid to halt coal mine expansion", BBC News, 19 May 2023.
  8. Sandra Laville,"Not the future we should be going for: the reopening of Wales’s Aberpergwm coalmine", The Guardian, 18 March 2022.
  9. "Aberpergwm", Wikipedia, Accessed October 2023.