Solntsevsky coal complex

From Global Energy Monitor

The Solntsevsky coal complex consists of underground and opencast mines, operated by East Mining Company, producing 4 million tonnes per annum, for the Sakhalin GRES-1 power station and Sakhalin GRES-2 power station, near the village of Kransnopol'ye, in Sakhalin Oblast, Russia.

The complex consists of the Yuzhnuy-1 and Yuzhnuy-2 coal mines and the namesake Solntsevsky coal mine.[1] The company is looking to enlarge the project.[2]


The map below shows the location of the complex, 2km from Kransnopol'ye village, in Uglegorsky District, Sakhalin Oblast, Russia.[3]

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Coal Mine Background

The Solntsevsky opencast mine has been operating since 1987.[2] Only 4.4 million tons in total was mined between 1987 and 2003. In 2011 the company bought licenses to work at Yuzhnuy-2 site with more than 130 million tons of reserves. In 2015 the East Mining Company (VGK) started to look to further expand the complex.[1] The mining complex exports via East Mining Company's Shakhtersk port to Asia-Pacific countries.[2]

Coal Dump Collapse and Pressure on Local Newspaper

On July 10, 2021, a coal dump at the mine collapsed and blocked the Zhyoltaya river. The collapse came after an open letter warning about the coal dump's condition appeared on the local newspaper Uglegorskiye Novosti. On July 14th, Uglegorskiye Novosti's editor-in-chief Zinaida Makarova was confronted in her office by the deputy directors of VGK about her coverage of the company. Later same day, Makarova was fired by the local mayor while working on a news story on the collapse. Furthermore, the Uglegorskiye Novosti offices were raided by unidentified men that downloaded files from office computers, and Uglegorsk Mayor Sergei Doroshchuk ordered the newspaper employees to leave the building. As of July 19, the electricity at the office was cut off for five days.[4]

Project Details

  • Sponsor:
  • Parent Company: East Mining Company's (VGK) subsidiary, Solntsevsky Coal Mine.[1]
  • Location: 2km from Kransnopol'ye village, in Uglegorsky District, Sakhalin Oblast, Russia.[1]
  • GPS Coordinates: 48.933062, 142.186323 (exact)
  • Status: Operating
  • Production Capacity: 4 Mt/year to increase to 10 Mt/year[2]
  • Mineable Resource: 300 million tons[2]
  • Coal type: Thermal coal,[5] lignite and bituminous coal[6]
  • Mine Size:
  • Mine Type: Opencast and underground
  • Start Year: 1987, new stage planned for 2018 (delayed)[2]
  • Workforce Size: 800 (1148 with 2021 expansion)[2]
  • Source of Financing:

Articles and resources


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 East Mining Company, "About the company," accessed 8 August 2019.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 East Mining Company, “Solntsevsky coal mine for 30 years”, 25 August 2017.
  3. Угольный разрез Солнцевский, Wikimapia, accessed Mar. 2021.
  4. Coalson, Robert; Barabashova, Lyubov (July 21, 2021). "Journalists Say Sakhalin Newspaper Shut Down Over Reporting On Russian Coal Producer". Radio Free Europe. Retrieved July 29, 2021.
  5. CNCrusher, "Russia Suppliers Miners Steam Coal Exports," accessed 9 August 2019.
  6. East Mining Company, "Coal ranks and caloric value" accessed 9 august 2019.

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