Future Developments

UCMSRC formally commenced with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on September 24, 1998 for a nominal two year period. The MOU has now evolved since then with a Letter of Understanding (LOU) being renewed at 2 year intervals. UCMSRC is in the process of developing a Business Plan which will reflect its incorporation into CIM and affiliation with the Asia Pacific Partnership (APP) - Coal Mining Task Force / Coal Mine Health and Safety.

The UCMSRC web site continues to be hosted on the Natural Resources Canada (CANMET) main server in Ottawa. Access is by username/password only, in order not to violate departmental rules and regulations as they pertain to simultaneous translations in French and web page formats. A "public" web site has been set up to host that part of the UCMSRC site which can be made available to the general public. This site is now hosted by CIM.

UCMSRC still retains the flexibility to develop further projects as the need arises. The medium-to-long-term outlook for underground coal mining in Canada however is looking more promising with several new underground coal mines potentially opening within the next several years.

In some ways the downsizing and uncertainty of the past has strengthened the need for closer communication and cooperation between the remaining underground coal mines and other stakeholders. The increasing challenges must stimulate the participants of UCMSRC to choose the most appropriate projects and to bring them to timely and successful conclusions.