Limited impact on coal supply expected in rain-ravaged Shanxi
The coal supply of rain-ravaged Shanxi, a major coal base in northern China, will likely remain stable as most coal mines have fully resumed production.
In Tashan coal mine under Jinneng Holding Shanxi Coal Industry Co Ltd, the largest coal enterprise in Shanxi, Cao Minxing, a miner on duty, is busy in the operating room.
"I intended to take a holiday this month but was dragged back to work as we are stepping up production," said Cao.
Data from the local meteorological department show that from 8pm, October 2 to 8am, October 7, the average precipitation in Shanxi reached 119.5 mm, nearly fourfold the average rainfall in October.
Days of continuous rain have caused floods that halted production, damaged roads, and interrupted power supply in many areas.
However, the heavy rain will likely have limited impact on coal supply in the province, said industry insiders.
A total of 60 mines in Shanxi suspended production from October 1 to 7 due to heavy rainfall, said the provincial emergency management department earlier. "But most have resumed production, and only four were still closed due to flooding or road interruptions," noted Wang Qirui, head of Shanxi's emergency management department on Tuesday.
"Most of the coal mines only suspended production for a short time, so the overall supply will not be affected," Wang added.
Official data show that from October 1 to 8, the average daily coal shipment volume in Shanxi only decreased slightly compared with the same period last year. The main reason was not rainstorms but the autumn maintenance of the Datong-Qinhuangdao Railway, a major coal transportation channel, which started three days earlier than last year.
Many coal mines are also ramping up output to guarantee a stable coal supply.
From October 4 to 9, Jinneng Holding added 64,400 tons of coal supplies to several power plants in northeast China.
Another major coal producer, Huayang New Material Technology Group Co Ltd, sold 756,000 tons of coal during the week-long National Day holiday, 133,000 tons more than the original plan.
An executive of the group said that the company would further raise output by optimizing production plans and resources.