Cascade mine

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The Cascade mine is an opencast bituminous coal mine near Denniston on the West Coast of the South Island. The mine is owned by Bathurst Resources.

Approximate area only

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Project Details

Location: Near Denniston, north of Westport on the West Coast of the South Island. Part or all of the 76 ha mine is on Department of Conservation land.[1]
Coordinates: -41.769952,171.801689
Coal field: Buller
Background: Cascade has been in production for nearly 100 years.[2] The Cascade opencast mine was acquired from Eastern Resources Group by Bathurst in 2010. Cascade is the only mine in Bathurst’s Buller Project that is currently operational. The company has been granted an “Extension of Land” to include an area of additional resource that had been identified adjacent to the Cascade mine.[3]
Current owner: Bathurst Resources [4]
Status: Operating
Production capacity: A figure of 100,000 tonnes/year is cited on Bathurst’s website, but in the year ending June 2012 the mine produced 59,285 tonnes of coal[5] Bathurst states that production is now “ramping up to 150,000 tonnes per annum.[6] A presentation on Bathurst Resources by Helmsec states that the company has an export capacity target of 50-75,000 tonnes per annum.[7]
Estimated recoverable reserves: 1.5 million tones[8]
Mining technique: Opencast
Type of coal: Bituminous. Semi-soft coking coal.
Solid fuel calorific value (gross) 29.96 MJ/kg (Range for NZ coal 15.25–31.95 MJ/kg)[9]
Market information: Holcim's cement plant at Westport is a major domestic consumer. Bathurst is now targeting the export market and there has been one shipment to an Asian customer through Port Taranaki, and one via the Port of Lyttleton to a ferro silicon producer in Australia.[10]
Environmental and/or health & safety issues:

Articles and Resources


  1. Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment, "Mining operations on Department of Conservation Land", accessed December 2012
  2. Enzed Transport, "Coal mining past present and future links with rail development & heritage (West Coast / Canterbury, South Island)", accessed December 2012
  3. Bathurst Resources "Financial Statements for year ended 30 June 2012", accessed December 2012
  4. Bathurst Resources,"Buller", accessed December 2012
  5. Bathurst Resources, "Financial Statements for year ended 30 June 2012", accessed December 2012
  6. Bathurst Resources, "Financial Statements for year ended 30 June 2012", accessed December 2012
  7. Bathurst Resources Ltd, "Helmsec Hong Kong Forum, March 2012, p. 6", accessed December 2012
  8. Bathurst Resources, "Significant Increase in Reserves at Buller Coal Project", accessed December 2012
  9. MED, "Energy Data File 2011", accessed December 2012
  10. Alan Wood, "First Buller Project coal exported", The Press, December 2, 2011.

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