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  • The reinstatement of Alberta’s 1976 coal policy has put Atrum Coal’s (ATU) Elan Coal Project on hold, forcing company shares into a nosedive
  • Following the announcement, all significant site-based activities at the project — including drills planned for the year —will be suspended
  • The Elan Coking Coal Project sits on a particular category of land now prohibited from further exploration approvals pending widespread consultations on a new coal policy
  • Atrum’s Chief Executive Officer Andrew Caruso says ATU fully accepts the decision but in the same breath, welcomed a”rigorous, inclusive and transparent” consultation process on the matter
  • Atrum Coal shares are down a hefty 74.4 per cent following the news, trading at 6.4 cents

The reinstatement of Alberta’s 1976 coal policy has put Atrum Coal’s (ATU) Elan Coking Project on hold, forcing company shares into a nosedive.

The Canadian province reissued policy that dictates the conditions for which coal leasing, exploration and development can occur and has subsequently prohibited all future coal exploration approvals on particular land types.

Atrum’s Elan Project sits on category two land, which refers to land not normally considered for open pit coal mining unless appropriate environmental stewardship is applied.

This therefore puts it directly in the firing line of the reinstated legislation.

Although Atrum is able to continue pre-approved activities on the Elan Hard Coking Coal Project, the company confirmed all significant site-based activities — including drills planned for the year — would be suspended.

It comes with the small exception of baseline environmental study work required to ensure the continuity of work completed in previous years.

Atrum’s Chief Executive Officer Andrew Caruso says ATU fully accepts the decision but in the same breath, welcomed a”rigorous, inclusive and transparent” consultation process.

The company also drew attention to an exemption granted to another coal corporation in previous years to allow open-pit mining on category two land and will therefore be seeking further clarity on this matter.

In addition to reinstating the Coal Policy, the Minister of Energy issued a directive to the Alberta Energy Regulator advising no mountaintop removal — being where a proposed mine completely removes the top of a mountain — would be permitted.

Moving forward, all future coal exploration approvals on category two lands will be prohibited pending widespread consultations on a new coal policy.

Atrum Coal shares are down a hefty 74.4 per cent following the news, trading at 6.4 cents at 1:16 pm AEDT.

ATU by the numbers
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