Continuous improving of mining methods and operating efficiency

Over the past years Enefit has operated 5 surface and 14 underground mines. Company has continuously improved planning of mining operations and methods and thanks to that significant increased the overall mining efficiency. As the result the number of simultaneously operating mines has been decreased to one underground and one surface mine without suffering the decrease of the mining capacity or reliability of the oil shale supply

Operating mines

Our Senior engineering and planning teams are compiled from persons with long and extensive mine operation experiences. Our unique experience is with the oil shale quality management, soft rock operational planning, set up planning for high efficiency operations.

Estonia mine

Estonia mine, upgraded from 7Mt/year to 13Mt/year production capacity. Estonia mine is using Room and Pillar method for oil shale mining that feeds oil shale to the beneficiation plant. The plant is capable for producing two oil shale products simultaneously. Residues from the beneficiation process are used to produce aggregates and fillers.

Narva open cast

Narva open cast is operating 14 draglines with total extraction and removal capacity of around 30M m3 overburden and 6 Mt of oil shale per annum. Selective Mining method is used to produce oil shale products without beneficiation.

Continuous engineering to improve mining efficienty

Enefit is continuously implementing new mining methods to reduce the mining losses, - equipment and miners needed for extraction. Our development planning and engineering team is continuously working out improvements for the used mining methods.

Open cast mines

In open cast mines, Enefit has increased oil shale extraction efficiency by improving the mining methods, by implementing and developing non-blasting methods of extraction.

Underground mines

In underground mines, Enefit plans to implement longwall mining, which is expected to decrease mining losses from 22–35% to 5–10%, increase mining capacity and reduce environmental impacts compared to surface mining operations.

Room and pillar mining

Mining losses 22–35% Mining capacity of production department has been increased by 24%, comparing with old methods

  • Number of equipment and miners decreased
  • LHD loaders for ROM transportation
  • Entire mining process upgraded
  • Over 4 meter drilling depth and blast setup

Implementing longwall mining in underground mines

Mining losses 5–10% Mining capacity increased by 100%

  • Decrease of the operating personnel
  • Reducing of blasting
  • Minimizing the impact of ground subsidence
  • Reduced environmental impacts

Improving open cast mining with non-blasting methods

  • Lowered costs of surface mining
  • Currently 14 draglines in operations in the Narva open cast mine
  • Ripping method for selective oil shale mining: oil shale losses decreased by 7%
  • High selective continuous mining operations of oil shale: decreased cost of extraction by 25%

New value for the community from former mining areas

Enefit is experienced in mine reclamation and giving new value to former industrial areas. Enefit is committed to the re-cultivation of formerly mined areas in environmentally sustainable and community-focused ways

  • 14,000 hectares of land reforested.
  • Estonian Mining Museum opened in an underground mine in Kohtla, a popular tourist destination.
  • The closed Aidu open cast mine is being turned into a sports and recreation facility.
  • The Sirgala open cast mine, situated far away from human habitation, now houses a military firing rang

In co-operation with the local municipality we are creating possibilities to spend holidays and organise top water sports events on the former territory of Aidu opencast mine.

Mine engineering and planning services

Our dedicated mining engineering team is capable of performing various engineering tasks. Our engineers are experienced in soft rock mining operations and set up planning for efficient operation planning. Our Senior engineering and planning teams are compiled from persons with long and extensive mine engineering and planning experiences

Together with our partners we are making various tasks of mining engineering including evaluation of geological, chemical ,mineralogical, geotechnical parameters.

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