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McClane Canyon Mine

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This article is part of the Coal Issues portal on SourceWatch, a project of Global Energy Monitor and the Center for Media and Democracy. See here for help on adding material to CoalSwarm.

McClane Canyon Mine is an underground operation in Garfield County, CO, controlled by Rhino Energy.

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July 2010: CAM-Colorado pursues expanded operations

A sister company of the owner of the McClane Canyon Mine, CAM-Colorado LLC, is proposing to expand its operations as an alternative to being forced to close at the end of 2010 when it loses its only customer, the Cameo Station. The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is considering a request by CAM-Colorado for a lease modification of 320 acres. The company wants to expand production to 500,000 tons a year. According to the BLM, “the lease modification would reduce the risk of bypassing millions of tons of federal coal within the leasehold and allow the mine to remain in operation."[1]

CAM-Colorado proposes to ship coal to eastern markets and says the only way to economically do so is by rail. It would build a coal-cleaning plant and related facilities at the mine, and it would truck coal to a rail load-out facility that would be built on private property west of the Fruita refinery. It is proposing to increase production to justify costs of the rail load-out and coal-cleaning plant. It also would build a permanent stockpile of waste rock on 14 acres south of the mine.[1]

Jeremy Nichols, climate and energy program director for the environmental group WildEarth Guardians, said the proposal may reflect the hang-ups CAM-Colorado ran into while pursuing the proposed new Red Cliff Mine, also north of Fruita. The BLM last year decided to revise a draft environmental impact statement on that project, in part because a second company expressed interest and said an expanded study area would make the leasing process more competitive. Besides being critical of coal’s emissions when burned, WildEarth Guardians has raised concerns about the BLM letting several western Colorado mines vent methane during their operations, rather than capture it for use or at least flare it, to reduce its potency as a greenhouse gas.[1]

Mine Data

  • MSHA ID: 503013
  • Operator:
  • Controller: Rhino Energy
  • Union:
  • County: Garfield
  • State: CO
  • Latitude: 39.44
  • Longitude: -108.77
  • 2007 Production (short tons): 247,120
  • Coal Type: Bituminous
  • Mining Method: Underground
  • Mine Status: Active
  • Average No. of Employees: 25

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References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Dennis Webb, "Instead of closing, mine proposes expansion" Daily Sentinel, July 2, 2010.

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