Prairie Downs Metals has appointed the UK-based design consultant Atkins to carry out the environmental and social impact assessment (ESIA) for the Lublin Coal project in Poland.

The company initiated the ESIA, which includes a range of environmental monitoring programmes, field surveys, ecosystem sensitivity assessments, socio-economic surveys and a detailed community and stakeholder engagement plan.

Prairie said that under the Polish legislation, an ESIA must be completed to provide government authorities with sufficient information before awarding an environmental consent decision, which is a pre-requisite to the granting of a mining licence.

Assessment will run in parallel with Prairie Downs’ on-going drilling and mining permits at Lublin.

Prairie plans to complete a scoping study during the first half of this year.

The project features four coal licences covering 182km² in the Lublin Coal Basin of south-east Poland.

A maiden inferred coal resource of 1.6 billion tonnes of thermal coal has been estimated at the project, which is situated next to the Bogdanka coal mine and operated by Lubelski Wegiel Bogdanka.

Coal quality test work has demonstrated the potential for semi-soft coking coal from the main 391 coal seam, which hosts a current inferred resource of 327 million tonnes.

The Lublin coal project area was subject to exploration activities undertaken by the Polish Government and its agencies during the 1970s and 1980s.

The activities included regional geological mapping and drilling programmes, which indicated that the region is highly prospective and has the potential to host a large-scale thermal coal deposit.

Image: Project location map showing the adjacent Bogdanka Mine. Photo: courtesy of Prairie Downs Metals.