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largest coal mine in zambia
Zambia coal mine introduction
Zambia possesses substantial coal resources and has been producing coal continuously since 1967. The bulk of the coal has come from the Maamba coal mine, an open-cast operation in the southern part of the country near Lake Kariba. The Maamba deposit and other known coal occurrences are confined exclusively to the lower Karoo Gwembe Formation, within the series of fault-controlled basins that comprise the Mid-Zambezi Rift Valley. The Maamba deposit occurs within the Kazinze Basin but coal seams have also been discovered in the adjacent basins. Thin coal seams and carbonaceous shales have also been identified in the lower Karoo (Gwembe Formation) of the Luangwa and Luano-Lukusashi Valleys and in the eastern part of the Barotse Basin in western Zambia. Coal is mined at Maamba with a proven reserve of 20Mt. The coal is sub-bituminous durain-fusain with high ash content.
Zambian President Rupiah Banda opened the country’s largest coal mine Friday, after Singapore’s Nava Bharat took over majority shares and invested $750 million (525 million euros) at the once defunct state entity.
Nava Bharat, a Singapore subsidiary of India’s Nava Bharat Ventures, has a 65 percent stake in Maamba Collieries, with Zambia’s government owning 25 percent through its Zambia Copper Mines Investment Holdings.
The deal was signed last year to revive the mine situated in Maamba, about 410 kilometres (255 miles) southwest of the capital Lusaka.
Banda said the mine would create nearly 2,000 jobs when it is fully operational.
Coal Mining and Processing
Mining of coal is by open pit method using state-of-the-art Heavy Earth Moving Equipment with fuel efficient Diesel Engines.
The raw coal is processed in the Coal handling and Preparation Plant (CHPP). The plant employs modern technology which ensures zero discharge of effluents, thereby eliminating contamination of surface and ground water.
Finally, the water used for washing of coal is completely recycled. This makes the coal processing activity environmentally friendly.
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