Montem pulls plug on Tent Mountain

Montem Resources, who had plans to restart production at the previously abandoned Tent Mountain open-pit coal mine in Canada, has reportedly withdrawn plans and is walking away.

According to the Canadian Press, the Australian-based company will no longer be developing the site in southwestern Alberta and has entered a request with regulators to end the ongoing impact assessment plan for the project.

CEO Peter Doyle told the paper of the Crowsnest Pass region site: “The coal mine, in our minds, is a no-go. Montem Resources Alberta Operations will not be carrying out the resumption of mining activities at the project.”

Plans for Tent Mountain and a return to Alberta coal first emerged in 2020, after the United Conservative government revoked a decades-old policy that blocked open-pit coal mines in the eastern slopes of the Rockies.

Doyle, the Press reported, said Montem will now focus its efforts on plans to turn the Tent Mountain site, which hasn’t produced coal since 1983, into a renewable energy facility that will use wind power to pump water to a storage pond up-mountain and generate electricity as it is released back downhill.

He noted that the company’s recent agreement with Alberta utility TransAlta, which has agreed to pay up to $25 million for half of the project, “crystallized” its focus on the pump hydro project.

“We’re full steam ahead on our new partnership with TransAlta,” said Doyle. “(It’s) a great win for everybody.”

A final investment decision on the project will be made in 2025. 

Source: Canadian Press