Serbia: A quarter of a century of work of the most productive mine in the Kolubara Coal Basin

, Mining

Strength and persistence of Tamnava


The 25th anniversary of the Tamnava – Zapadno Polje open cast mine, which is the mainstay of production and the most productive mine in the EPS branch – Kolubara Coal Basin, was marked by a ceremonial academy in Lazarevac. Plaques for special contributions to the work and development of this mine on behalf of the EPS branch – Kolubara Coal Basin were awarded to Aleksandar Vucic, President of Serbia, and Milorad Grcic, acting director of Electric Power Industry of Serbia, who received the plaque on behalf of the president.

– Every fourth light bulb in Serbian households is lit today thanks to the workers of the Tamnava – Zapadno Polje open cast mine – Grcic pointed out and congratulated the workers on the anniversary. He pointed to the hard work and dedication of the miners and workers at this company.

– During the quarter of a century, production of this mine has only stopped twice, during the changes of 5 October 2000 and in May 2014, when Tamnava – Zapadno Polje was completely flooded. Although 2014 was one of the most difficult for Kolubara, with the support of the state, it was then decided, although there were contrary ideas, to continue the work of the mine and to pump water from the resulting lake 60 meters deep. I thank the then Prime Minister, and the current President of Serbia, Aleksandar Vucic, for supporting the decision to save the mine – Grcic said, who was the director of Kolubara Coal Basin at the time of the flood.

Talking about the success of the employees of this mine, Grcic said that according to the field surveys so far, there are another 240 million tons of coal at the site, which will enable secure supply of electricity to households and the economy in Serbia in the coming decades.

In the 25 years of operation, 214 million tons of lignite have been excavated at this site, and 1,173 employees today provide a quarter of all coal needs for electricity production in Serbia.

Milan Miskovic, director of coal production at Kolubara Coal Basin, said that the Tamnava – Zapadno Polje mine delivers an average of 14 million tons of coal to Obrenovac thermal power plants a year, which is about half of Kolubara’s production.

– In 2017, a record 17 million tons of coal were excavated at Tamnava – Zapadno Polje – Miskovic said.

Milan Djordjevic, President of the EPS Workers Union, thanked all former and current employees for their hard work and contribution to making Tamnava the strongest support of Kolubara in the last 10 years.

– It is very important for the future of the mine and Kolubara that coal reserves of the Tamnava – Zapadno Polje coal are larger than the quantities that have been mined out so far. That is what gives hope – Djordjevic said and thanked Vucic and Grcic for all they have done to recover the mine after the catastrophic floods and achieve production records.

Acknowledgments for their contribution to the work of Tamnava were awarded to retired and current workers.



The decision to open the Tamnava – Zapadno Polje mine was made in 1984, and a decade later, on 4 November 1994, the overburden removal began. A year later, on 17 November 1995, the first coal system was commissioned and the first quantities of lignite were mined out. The record year for coal production was 2017, when exactly 16,624,322 tons of coal were mined. The best result in overburden removal was recorded in 2013, when a record of 35,209,694 cubic meters was achie