NuCoal on the Move to Produce Skilled Miners

Submitted by Jim Thesiger on 15 March, 2010 - 04:44

NuCoal (NCR), an emerging coal miner is currently moving forward with its plan to establish a training facility for the underground miners in an attempt to deal with the shortage of skills. According to Glen Lewis, the managing director of the company, his generation which has formed the 70 percent of the sector may leave the industry within next 10 years but will take the valuable experience along with it. Mr. Lewis added that, if the crisis is not dealt properly, a significant shortage will emerge. The managing director is currently planning to deal with the shortage of skills by developing a training facility in an attempt to move parallel to a commercial coal mine, something that his company is intending to establish.

It is to be mentioned that NuCoal is developing its deposit of 247 million tonne Doyles Creek coal in the Hunter Valley- a project that is next to the United mine of Xstrata and Wambo operation of Peabody Energy. Mr. Lewis, who previously worked as the general manager of the underground operations of Xstrata in NSW stated that, many companies no longer took on significant number of apprentices. Instead, the workers were sent to training facilities where a large portion of the training was done at the school in a workshop. He added that the facility that his side is currently developing can help these training facilities by allowing their students to get some working experience from the real environment.

The shortage of skilled labour is seen as one of the main concerns as far as the growth if the coal industry is taken under consideration while the mining sector is experiencing another boom along with the recovery of the international market. The Minerals Council of Australia has estimated that the industry will require an additional 86,000 workers if it keeps the present market share in the international commodities market. Miners will require as many as 31,000 additional skilled tradesmen along with 9000 industry professionals and 30,000 skilled operators.