A NEW coal mining company will be established near Beitbridge if results of an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) are favourable to the project.
An official from Mawenje Consulting Zimbabwe, a firm tasked with carrying out the (EIA), Mr Tatenda Mafara, said as part of their environmental impact assessment for Tuli Coal Mine, they were working on conducting public consultations for an Environmental and Social Impact Assessment (ESIA).
“Public consultations for the ESIA for Tuli Coal Mine are underway. We are going to have an all stakeholder consultation on March 30 in Beitbridge. The mine’s operations are dependent among others on what the public will say during the consultative meeting,” he said.
In a public notice, the consultancy firm said Tuli Coal Mine intends to establish a coal mine in the Massabi Coal Field in Matabeleland South.
“The proposed new coal mine will help to increase the country’s declining domestic coal production. The mine will also be able to supply domestic coal markets (thermal, metallurgical; and industrial users) and those in the surrounding regions,” it said.
In addition, the mine intends to export coal products into the international markets generating the much needed foreign currency.
It is also believed that the proposed new mining venture will create employment for local people and businesses as well as those in surrounding areas.
“The new proposed mine falls within Volume 2 of the EIA guidelines of Zimbabwe. Volume 2 covers all projects relating to the mining sector.
“In compliance with the Environmental Management Act (Chapter 20:27) Tuli Coal Mine is required to prepare an ESIA report for the above-mentioned project,” it said.
Zimbabwe has vast unexploited coalfields in the Hwange and Binga areas along the fossil beds of the Zambezi River.
It also has huge unexploited coalfields in Chiredzi in the south-east lowveld.