Teck Resources Ltd. announced recently that all of its operations remain in production, and the results for metallurgical coal exports have significantly exceeded guidance, despite challenges related to the coronavirus (COVID-19).

“We remain focused on ensuring we have the necessary measures in place to safeguard the health and safety of our people and communities, while maintaining safe operations,” President and CEO Don Lindsay said.

Following a difficult start to the year, Lindsay said Teck’s met coal business unit improved significantly in late February and March. First-quarter met coal sales were estimated at 5.6 million metric tons (mt), exceeding the company’s guidance of 4.8 million to 5.2 million mt. At the same time, based on preliminary results, the company expects to report adjusted site cost of sales of approximately $65/mt, well below previous expectations.

Washed coal inventories at mine sites were reduced during the quarter, supporting sales and increasing operational flexibility, the company said.

The company’s Neptune facility upgrade continues to advance and major equipment deliveries are on track. The new shiploader, stacker/reclaimer and single dumper replacement will be commissioned around year-end. Completion of construction is still expected in Q1 2021, with the new double dumper expected to be commissioned in Q2 2021. The shutdown at the Elkview Operations to complete the plant expansion is also progressing well and is expected to be completed in mid-April.

The Elkview prep plant is being expanded from a capacity of 7 million mtpy to 9 million mtpy, which will enable Teck to replace higher cost production from the Cardinal River mine, which produced 1.4 million mt in 2019, with lower cost production from Elkview when Cardinal River closes later this year.