Coronach, Sask. prepares for economic future with federal plans to phase out coal

Coronach, Sask. prepares for economic future with federal plans to phase out coal
The economy of Coronach, Sask. relies heavily on Westmoreland Coal Poplar River Mine and Poplar River Power Station, a coal-fired station owned by SaskPower.

Although there are no set closing dates for either plant, the town is working to develop an economic transition plan .

“Over 40 years ago, we transitioned from an agricultural community to an industrial town,” said Trevor Schnell, the town’s mayor.

“Today, we are in a different century, and like many rural communities, Coronach is being presented with new challenges that we have to face.”

The loss of those mines will likely result in 80 per cent of residents leaving. Roughly 300 residents work at either the coal mine or the power station, the town said.

The town has hired MDB Insight, a professional economic development research firm, for the next three months as they look at ways to help its transition away from coal.

MDB Insight will be consulting with community leaders, businesses and residents in early October.

The town said the plan will be geared towards developing more economic initiatives in the area.

“We have an innovative and motivated community…and we have been given a large window of time to work on short- and long-term action plans to ensure Coronach remains prosperous and vibrant,” Schell said.

The town recently received a $1.6-million upgrade to their water treatment facility, something they believe will help both residents and businesses moving forward.

Upgrades and expansion are being undertaken at Southland Co-op, while Richardson Pioneer is also planning a new build in 2020.

Residents and businesses also formed the Business Network in February, focusing on promoting local business which led to the creation a pubic market in August.

Coronach tourism is in the middle of expansion as an RFP for a Coal Interpretative Center feasibility study/business plan is being done. It’s expected to be complete by early 2020.
News Topics :
Similar Articles :
“It sort of shadows over everything that there is a closure date, ” Catherine MacKay Wilson knows in a post coal future, Coronach, Saskatchewan loses theirs. Listen “It’s in our blood, really, ” Catherine...
As mayor of Coronach, a tiny southern Saskatchewan town near a power station and a coal mine, he estimates more than 50 houses are up for sale and people are...
For a village of 831 on the gentle plains of East Central Alberta, Forestburg is shouldering a disproportionate cost of Albertas and Canadas greenhouse gas reduction ambitions. Coal...
Picket lines went up at various locations Friday as upwards of 5, 000 employees at six Crown corporations and one Crown agency walked off their jobs. Chris Macdonald with Unifor says...
Experts from across Saskatchewan gathered in Regina over the weekend to discuss climate change and how the province can phase out fossil fuels in a way that makes sense. “In...