The study will be carried out in the southern and northern sides of the mining basin without interrupting the current production work.
BCMCL acting managing director Engineer Habib Uddin Ahmed on Monday said: “We will sign a deal with the joint venture of US firm John T Boyd Company and local organisation Muzumder Enterprise on February 16 to carry out the feasibility study.”
The feasibility study will be conducted on a 4.5 square kilometre area. The project will be completed by June 2018.
An official of BCMCL said the government has plans to produce 20,000 MW of electricity by 2021 and more than 53% will be produced from coal based power plants using domestic and international source of coal.
The nearby Power Development Board (PDB) power plant is going to install their third unit of 275 MW capacity and it will operate based on the coal extracted from Barapukuria coal mine, he said.
The PDB is the biggest consumer of the coal extracted from the mine. It procures 80% of the coal for using in the existing 250 MW power plants established near the mine.
“Considering the scenario, expansion of the mine has become essential in order to fulfil the demand for coal and make the government’s vision successful,” he added.
The feasibility study includes 3D seismic survey, exploratory drilling, mine design and project feasibility assessment, assessment of resettlement requirements and preparation of resettlement action plan, determination of geological and hydro-geological conditions, mining method, actual reserve, yearly production rate, mine life, detailed economic analysis and to determine if the project is economical viable or not.
If the feasibility study shows that mining from both sides the coal basin is economically viable then it will help increase the present production capacity of Barapukuria coal mine.
This could ensure the supply of coal to nearby power plants and meet up the demand of coal for local consumers as well as contribute in the economic development of the country.