Owner of Mechel Igor Zyuzin offers to close coal mines

In Russia, almost half of the operating mines are ultra-hazardous, according to the Ministry of Energy
On Wednesday, 16 March, Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich held the first four years, the Conference on Security in the coal mines. The occasion was sad: the end of February at the Vorkuta mine "North" as a result of the impact of mining and the subsequent series of explosions killed 31 miners and five rescuers. Emerged in the workings of the fire could not be eliminated, so the mine is now flooded. In just the past 12 years in Russia, there have been 10 major accidents in the mines, which killed a total of 391 people. The largest was in 2007, "Ulyanovskaya" mine (110 miners), in 2010 on "Raspadskaya" (91 people) and the mine "North" (36).

At the meeting came and co-owners of the largest coal companies - Igor Zyuzin ( "Mechel"), Alexey Mordashov ( "Severstal") and Vladimir Rashevsky (SUEK), told those present at the event. They discussed measures to help prevent future casualties. Zyuzin has offered the most radical option - the government should develop a program to encourage the transition to the open method of mining, RASSCZali interlocutors "Vedomosti". He believes that the need to shut down coal mines with dangerous methane and coal dust. Zyuzin considers that problems with the provision of steel companies coking coal (it was he who in the vast majority and mined by underground methods) will not arise. He pointed out that the Elga coal deposit "Mechel" with reserves of 2.2 billion tons of coal in the near future, can completely replace the Vorkuta coal.

In Russia, 70 coal mines are now operating, according to the presentation presented at the meeting Deputy Energy Minister Anatoly Yanovsky (is in "Vedomosti"). Of these, the danger is not only represent eight. But more than half - 38 - ultrahazardous. They produced 18 million tons of coal per year. 12 critically dangerous mines. It produces a little more than 9 million tons of coal per year. Four of the 12 mines owned by "Severstal". All of them are located in Vorkuta. Besides them in Vorkuta, the company has another mine and coal mine.

The cost of closing 12 mines amount to 34.11 billion rubles., Estimated the Ministry of Energy. The number of employees employed by them in the presentationand Janowski is not specified.

If the decision will be made, companies will have to close the mine at his own expense. The state will close the company for the budget money only if he owns shares in mines, the representative of the Ministry of Energy. Comment, how likely such an outcome, he refused. Of the 34.11 billion rubles. the state will have to spend only 1.35 billion rubles., since it owns the mine "Barentsburg" on the island of Spitsbergen, as well as "Krasnogorsk" Prokopyevsk. Evraz in case of closure will have, it is estimated the Ministry of Energy, to spend 5.34 billion rubles, "Severstal" -. 17.43 billion rubles, "Mechel" -. 2.99 billion rubles. Representatives of these companies did not comment on whether they are willing to mine closure.

"The meeting discussed various proposals and ideas", - said the Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich. All options require careful consideration, including a proposal Zyuzin, a spokesman said.

Many of those present at the meeting embraced the idea Zyuzin as a joke, say a few interlocutors "Vedomosti".In Vorkuta coal mined unique brand, they can not be replaced by coal from Elga coal deposit. Real proposals, how to deal with the problem of security in the mines, in addition to monitoring the evolution of gas, did not hear, says one of the participants. But sudden methane emissions is impossible to predict, he says.

Completely escape from the coking coal mines it is impossible: the premium brand, not only in Russia but all over the world are only at a depth where they were formed under the influence of the huge pressure and temperature. On the surface, it is practically impossible to meet them, said another participant in the meeting.

"Speech to close the production in the coming years is not going," - says a source close to "Severstal". In addition, the entire production process at the Cherepovets Metallurgical Plant (owned by "Severstal") is ground just under the Vorkuta coal. The meeting discussed, including increasing the level of security of the Russian coal industry in the long term, he said. The fate of the dangerous mines expressedazlichnye options: it is obvious that you need to develop technical security system or in a very distant future, to eliminate the production of them, the source "Vedomosti" says.

Source close to one another steel company, doubts that the state will be able to provide jobs for former miners in single-industry towns.

Industry and Trade Ministry spokesman did not respond to questions "Vedomosti".