Donkin Coal Mine resumes operations after 2-year closure

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Donkin Coal Mine resumes operations after 2-year closure

< p class="sc-v64krj-0 knjbxw">A truck leaves the Donkin mine site in Cape Breton.

Inspectors from the province's occupational health and safety team were at the Donkin mine in Nova Scotia on Tuesday to inspect the only underground coal operation of the province.

Some mining activities resumed this week after a two-year shutdown due to falling rocks from the roof of the mine.

Regular safety inspections will be carried out by the Department of Labour, Skills and Immigration.

The company that owns the mine, Kameron Coal, is required to submit monthly reports on ventilation, emergency power supply and stone dust sampling.

The company must also submit company reports ;inspection on request.

Our presence at the mine is not continuous, it is intermittent and it is to ensure that all activities that have been identified in the safety plans are followed, says Gary O' Toole, Senior Director General of the Department of Labour, Skills and Immigration

Before the mine could reopen, the Department of Labor reviewed Kameron Coal's operational plans to ensure they complied with occupational health and safety laws.

Donkin Mine Entrance

In June, the department received seven security plans and experts conducted an in-depth review of these plans.

The province's Department of Environment and Climate Change has asked Kameron Coal to update its greenhouse gas management plan to ensure that measures are in place to mitigate the emissions. This plan was approved last month.

The company has committed to installing a working system to eliminate gases within 18 months of the restart of the production.

The Donkin Mine is buzzing with activity again after a two-year closure.

The province says it will continue to monitor the mine's greenhouse gas emissions and expects the mine to meet Nova Scotia's targets.

< p class="e-p">Before the mine closed in 2020, the Ministry of Labor issued a series of stop work orders due to rocks falling from the roof. Stop orders in areas where rocks have fallen remain in effect.

Jill Balser, Minister for Labour, Skills and Immigration, said in a communicated that the province's priority was to ensure that workplaces had safety plans in place.

Since February 2017, the department has conducted 102 inspections resulting in 152 warnings, 119 orders to comply and 37 administrative penalties.

James Edwards, of the Cape Breton Regional Municipality, sits on the mine's community liaison committee.

James Edwards is city ​​councilor and member of the mine's community liaison committee.

He says the reopening of the mine will have a substantial economic impact.

When you have an employer returning to business with over 150 high-paying jobs, that should be seen as a positive announcement for sure, he says.

And I can tell you say that based on my discussions with management, security is priority number one.

With information from Wendy Bergfeldt, from CBC

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