A Supply System For Western Canadian Thermal Coal

CIM Bulletin, Vol. 71, No. 794, 1978

E. G. Bazeley, Senior Supply Resources Engineer, Fuels Division, Ontario Hydro, Toronto, Ontario

The paper reviews the scope, timing and financial impact of this significant project, which involves the supply and transportation of nearly 4 million tons per year of bituminous coal and lignite from sources in British Columbia, Alberta and Saskatchewan to Ontario Hydro's generating stations. The critical factors involved in the selection and utilization of these coals are discussed in relation to the three types of coal to be utilized initially. The paper then deals with each of the significant project elements to be undertaken by the various companies involved in the mining and movement of the coal, beginning with production at the mine through rail shipment to Thunder Bay, train-to-ship terminal-ling, shipment by lake vessel from there to the generating station, and finally blending the bituminous coal with United States coal prior to combustion. The review discusses the key features of the facilities involved in each case and the status and timing of the project elements, which are phased for the start of coal shipment by mid-1978. The paper concludes with some observations on the capability of the project to handle increased tonnages and the challenges facing the movement in terms of quality, quantity and cost.
Keywords: Coal mining, Coal supply, Thermal coal, Transportation, Ontario Hydro, Luscar Stereo Ltd., Byron Creek Collieries Ltd., Manitoba and Saskatchewan Coal Company.