All mines have a lifespan which runs for as long as there is coal to be mined practically. At this point, we are not able to commit to how long the mine will be active for as we have no confirmation of the quantity of coking coal available.
Initial indications infer that there is a potential resource of around 750million tonnes which would give local employment for at least 20 years, and possibly even as long as 50 years.
There are strict guidelines and legislation which would be adhered to as and when the mine reaches the end of its viable life. Depending on the site, some mines can be used for other purposes – for example The Eden Project, a visitor attraction in Cornwall, is at a disused clay mine – whilst others are returned to their pre-mining use after closure. The legislation also includes preparing the workforce for moving onto new employment as and when necessary.