Ewington mine

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Ewington Coal Mine (also known as Griffin Coal Mine) is a surface coal mine located 10 kilometres east of Collie in Western Australia.

As of 2011, the mine was owned and operated by Griffin Coal, a subsidiary of Lanco Infratech Limited. However, Lanco (and Griffin Coal) have since entered into receivership.[1] In June 2021, Griffin Coal invoked "force majeure" to suspend operations.[2]

As of 2023, the mine's current ownership, status, and fate remain unclear; the mine appears to be mothballed.

Location

The satellite image below shows the exact location of the mine.

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Background

Ewington is an open cut coal mine with the Ewington 2 mine developed in 1996. The Ewington 1 mine was developed in 2009.[3]

The Indian firm Lanco Infratech acquired the mine in 2011, but entered receivership in 2017. Despite this, Griffin Coal remained operational. However, in June 2021, Griffin Coal invoked "force majeure," using the excuse of "a very wet winter" to suspend operations.[4]

The mine, which is now in the hands of Indian bank ICICI following the implosion of Lanco, is believed to have lost money almost every year since being acquired by Indian interests.[5] In late-2022, it was reported that Griffin Coal owed over $1.4 billion to secured creditors through a trustee known as "Certane" which acts on behalf of an Indian banking syndicate led by ICICI Bank.[6] (ICICI Bank has been the ultimate owner of Ewington Mine since Lanco Infratech hit the wall in 2017.)[6]

In December 2022, the Western Australia Government reportedly offered $19.5 billion USD to continue operations in a bid to protect the state's electricity supply, but Griffin Coal has yet to accept the offer.[7] A government official admitted that they would not ordinarily intervene in this manner, but noted that Griffin has a role to play in supporting a stable energy system while Western Australia continues to transition away from coal-fired power generation, and the government could not sit idly by while stability of Western Australia's energy system was at risk.[7]

Griffin Coal supplies the Japanese-owned Bluewaters power station, which feeds into Western Australia's main electricity network, the South West Interconnected System (SWIS).[7]

Mine Details

  • Operator: The Griffin Coal Mining Company Pty Ltd[8]
  • Owner: ICICI Bank[9]
  • Location: Collie, Western Australia
  • GPS Coordinates: -33.361338,116.252589
  • Status: Mothballed
  • Production Capacity: 2 mtpa
  • Total Resource: 1.2 billion tonnes[10]
  • Mineable Reserves: 60.8 million tonnes (1992)[11]
  • Coal Type: Bituminous (Met and Thermal)
  • Mine Size:
  • Mine Type: Surface
  • Start Year: 1996
  • Source of Financing:

Articles and resources

References

  1. Projects, IJGlobal, accessed Oct 2022
  2. 'Broke' Griffin Coal invokes force majeure, citing wet winter to suspend operations ABC News, 29 Jul 2021.
  3. Griffin Coal, "Ewington 1 & 2 Mines", Griffin Coal website, accessed November 2010.
  4. 'Broke' Griffin Coal invokes force majeure, citing wet winter to suspend operations ABC News, 29 Jul 2021.
  5. Daniel Mercer, "WA's biggest private power station moves to take over loss-making, Indian-owned coal mine", ABC News Australia, 31 August 2022.
  6. 6.0 6.1 Daniel Mercer, "Failed Griffin Coal mine owes close to $1.5 billion to creditors as WA electricity grid woes loom", ABC News Australia, 4 October 2022.
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 Rebecca Trigger, "WA government offers $19.5 million to keep struggling Griffin Coal mine operational", ABC News Australia, 14 February 2023.
  8. "Ewington Open Cut Coal Mine, Collie", Government of Western Australia EPA website, accessed April 2023.
  9. Daniel Mercer, "Failed Griffin Coal mine owes close to $1.5 billion to creditors as WA electricity grid woes loom", ABC News Australia, 4 Oct. 2022.
  10. "Natural Resources", Lanco Group website, accessed April 2023.
  11. EPA Report, accessed June 2020

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External resources

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