The Illawarra region contains some of Australia's best coking
coal resources. These have been mined since the 1880's, providing
coal for both export through Port Kembla and for use in the
steelworks (now operated by BlueScope Steel).
To maintain supply for steel making, BHP Billiton is developing
the Dendrobium Coal Mine. This underground mine will recover coal
from the lowermost 3.2m of the 9m thick Wongawilli Seam by longwall
mining methods (see an individual chock in the panel to the right)
at a rate of up to 5Mtpa ROM for 30 to 40 years. Coal from the
Wongawilli Seam is an essential component of 'Illawarra Blend'
premium coking coal, which is known for its specific steelmaking
More . . .