Should we re open the pits ?
That’s opencast not a pit. The decent easy stuff like that was finished off years ago, what’s left is the bottom of the barrel and they’ll struggle to make a profit.
Believe it or not I had forgot all about the planned opencast, when I put the thread up. I was just listening to Q time (I think) and they were talking about energy security, and the question just popped into my head, and I was interested in what STW thought about it.
Having given it a little bit of thought it, it would seem to be a huge question. The one thing I would like to see is a large amount of young people trained in engineering, even if opening them was unprofitable, the effect of having more well trained engineers in the future could only be good for the economy especially in areas which are already pretty grim.
some areas of thought
Carbon emissionsPosted 4 years ago
it’s grim up Northernie_lynchMember
or provide jobs for British people
That question was answered a long time ago. Dole not coal was the conclusion.
BTW reopening pits (even if you could) would be pointless as importing coal is cheaper than mining in the UK. For it to be economically viable to consumers would require a government subsidy, something which will be illegal under EU rules in 2018.Posted 4 years agogordimhorMember
Yeah now that the union is broken we can get people to work for the same wage as a Chinese miner , ,but we won’t have to reduce the electricity bills as we can blame it on the cost of reopening pits and training the workforce to develop skills lost since we closed all the pits 😈Posted 4 years agotrailmonkeyMember
For it to be economically viable to consumers would require a government subsidy, something which will be illegal under EU rules in 2018.
I was unaware of this and just googled it. Thanks for the heads up.
The degree to which democracy is being eroded and replaced by Chicago School economic edicts continues to astound and depress mePosted 4 years agoernie_lynchMember
It’ll make it much harder to reduce our carbon output.
Reopening UK pits wouldn’t increase our coal consumption, it would simply reduce our dependency on imported coal.
We still use a hell of lot of coal, despite the dash for gas, about the same as 20 years ago. The difference now though is that unlike 20 years ago we import most of it.
Posted 4 years ago
I worked in opencast mining for 10 years until the company I worked for went bust earlier this year. Ernie is right. The world coal price has been fairly low for a couple of years. The main reason being America dumping vast quantities of coal cheaply on the market. Sites are becoming more marginal, higher mining ratios and greater uncertainty of geology. High diesel costs also not helping. It is a shame to see areas struggling now as many people in the sector were dedicated and skilled, and prepared to work long hours.Posted 4 years ago
We still require coal for a large portion of electricity supply, but it is a sector governments are loathe to support. We could have been at the forefront of carbon capture and storage development, however an experimental scheme at Longannet power station fell by tge waysideCaptJonMember
athgray – Member
We still require coal for a large portion of electricity supply, but it is a sector governments are loathe to support. We could have been at the forefront of carbon capture and storage development, however an experimental scheme at Longannet power station fell by tge wayside
Precisely. We’re still going to need power from somewhere in the future and until fusion sorted we have a choice between unreliable renewables and undesirable nuclear or fossil fuels. With the right research coal can be mined at lower costs and carbon captured at source.Posted 4 years agothisisnotaspoonMember
I imagine they would be happy to mine coal with their bare teeth for free just so that they could boast about it to ‘other side of the pennines
Precisely. We’re still going to need power from somewhere in the future and until fusion sorted we have a choice between unreliable renewables and undesirable nuclear or fossil fuels. With the right research coal can be mined at lower costs and carbon captured at source.
CCS is a political hot potato. Successive governments allocate funding for it at the cheep feasibility study/pre-FEED/FEED stage, then as soon as projects get anywhere near some actual investment being required, they’re canned and more money spent on more feasability studies.
The stupid thing is Don Valley CCS is now being paid for out of Korea/Europe so all that subsidy/profit is going abroad.Posted 4 years agoTuckerUKMember
That’s true, I’ve been working in the mining industry for over 25yrs, and I’ve died on multiple occasions now 😆
I know, people do talk bollox, I heard some muppet say smoking was bad for you the other day, but I’ve been smoking 40 a day since I was 12 and I’m still here at 48. 🙄Posted 4 years ago
Dont know about the pits, but a typical opencast site moving 200,000m3 muck a week running 24hours might employ about 200 people directly. There is a lot of indirect jobs reliant to some degree on the sector though.
Suppliers, consultants, haulage firms, on site contractors, customers,Councils, SEPA/EPA, and other government bodies have employees dependant on coal production to some degree
This does not take into account other businesses and services eg shops, mechanics, barbers, schools and libraries, all of which suffer when an area loses an industry that may directly employ 2 or 3 thousand people. The knock on effects can be quite dramatic. Personal experience of Ayreshire for example, towns already struggling have had the final nail drilled into the coffin this year.
Coal could have benefited from some of the tax breaks and assistance from government at both UK and Scottish level provided to other sectors.
I am not complaining about wind farms though as they are now partly responsible for my current employment.Posted 4 years ago
Coal seems unfashionable, however over 42% of the Worlds electricity is produced using it. This is likely to be the case long after North Sea oil reserves have run dry. The UK is in the unique position of having a long history in the industry and a skills/knowledge base as well as a will to see the World reduce CO2 emissions long term.
We could be at the forefront of developing new technologies, however test on CC&S, biomass and coal gassification would be helped with consistency of supply from indigenous sources.Posted 4 years ago
The topic ‘Should we re open the pits ?’ is closed to new replies.