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New Zealand state owned mining company, Solid Energy New Zealand Limited, completed the purchase of the ill fated mining company, Pike River Coal Limited, assets, in July 2012. Pike River Coal Limited had previously been placed into receivership following the Pike River mine disaster of November, 2010, that killed 29 mine workers whose bodied have not yet been recovered.

Solid Energy to Keep Pike River Mine on Care and Maintenance
Solid Energy's acquisition of Pike River mine facilities include the main mining site near Atarau in the Grey District of the New Zealand West Coast as well as its stockpile and rail loading facility at Ikamatua. The seven personnel who had been keeping the mine on care and maintenance since the explosion at the mine in 2010 were transferred to the employ of Solid Energy.

Pike River Acquisition Includes Recovery of Trapped Miners's Bodies
Part of the Pike River mine purchase agreement with the receivers included the requirement that Solid Energy reach an agreement with the New Zealand government to recover the bodies of the 29 trapped mine workers who were killed when the explosion closed the mine in 2010, as long as the recovery can be achieved in a safe manner that is both technically feasible and financially credible.

Solid Energy has told families representing the 29 men who tragically died as a result of the mine disaster that it can not see a way to safely execute a standalone re-entry of the mine for the recovery of the men's bodies. Any recovery attempt would have to be part of a wider commercial mining venture that would result in the re-opening of the mine. For this reason it is expected that no body recovery attempt will get underway for several years into the future as Solid Energy will first have to establish a commercially viable, technically feasible and safe mining plan. The company will have to carry out a significant exploration program to determine the total coal resource that is available for mining as well as the geology of the coal bed. Once these factors are made clear a safe, economically sound mining development plan would be proposed. For these reasons Solid Energy has now secured the Pike River mine site and started planning for exploration of the main entry to the mine drift as the first step in improving knowledge of the resource. Solid Energy have assured families of the deceased miners that it remains committed to recovering the men's bodies.

Pike River Mine Development had Ignored Local Geology, Mining Conditions and Requirements
During the Royal Commission held into the disaster at the Pike River mine it was stated that the mine had been developed with an inadequate knowledge of geology, mining conditions and mining requirements. These matters will have to be thoroughly addressed and rectified before any decision can be made about its future and this effectively rules out any early resumption of underground mining at Pike River.

Any decision made in the future regarding the recovery of the men's bodies will be reviewed by the New Zealand government that may be inclined to set up a trust that could review any plans submitted by Solid Energy and oversee implementation of a body recovery program. The New Zealand government is committed to making a financial contribution to the implementation of a credible and safe body recovery program when a plan is developed.

Solid Energy remains committed to undertake any reasonable steps that would result in the miners bodies being returned to their families but at the same time they are adamant they are unable to risk further tragedy in
doing so.

Solid Energy New Zealand Ltd

From mines in Waikato, the West Coast of the South Island and Southland, Solid Energy export coal around the world and supply industrial users throughout New Zealand.The company’s coal production is around 4 million tonnes annually, which is evenly split between metallurgical coals for export more


Solid Energy New Zealand Ltd
15 Show Place Addington
Christchurch, NZ 8024

PO Box 1303
Christchurch, NZ 8013



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