The Gulf of Mexico oil spill involving British petroleum giant BP continues to dig into the company's pockets having cost about $8bn since April.

Keaton Energy is confident its first large coal mining project, Vanggatfontein in Mpumalanga, will be a major supplier of A-grade coal in the local market.

US crude oil prices have posted the first monthly decline since May as concerns about faltering economic growth, weak demand and bulging oil inventories pressured crude and gas.

Eskom has expressed concern over the quality of coal from domestic suppliers, which might affect its operations and push up prices.

The strike by more than 600 workers at Exxaro Sands inKwaZulu-Natal, now in its fourth day, will spread "like wildfire", the National Union of Mineworkers says.

Despite reports to the contrary, Eskom was still proceeding with plans to build another power station, the proposed R45bn Kusile venture.

Amid demands for a 14% wage increase, Exxaro Resources has been forced to stop operations its Hillendale mineral sands facility. Contingency plans are in place, however.

South Africa shipped 2.1 million tonnes of thermal coal to India in July, almost double June's 1.2 million tonnes, exporters say.

The Competition Tribunal has withdrawn a charge with the South African Police Service against Rory Cole, Financial Accountant of First Uranium.

Production at the Vele coal mine owned by Coal of Africa, was expected to start this year after discussions regarding the mine's environmental impact had progressed well.