Construction started Thursday on the region's latest mine.
The saws and hammers commenced on the Roman Coal Mine project near Tumbler Ridge, about 150 overland kilometres northeast of Prince George. It is located immediately adjacent the existing Trend Coal Mine. The new venture got its final approval on Aug. 7 and Thursday was when construction got underway.
According to the B.C. Ministry of Mining, this is a $200-million project scheduled to start full production sometime in 2014.
Both properties are owned by Peace River Coal, a subsidiary of Anglo American, one of the world's largest mining companies.
The mine will have an annual production capacity of 2 million to 4 million tonnes of metallurgical coal and will maintain 450 full-time jobs plus provide an additional 100 jobs for construction over the anticipated 16-year mine life.
The Trend mine next door will continue with its full complement of employees and will handle the coal processing from the new mine. The coal will then be shipped south by rail to Prince George where it will veer west to coastal shipping terminals in Prince Rupert.