The first large rail transport with a total of 122 rail cars from the Bethune mine in Saskatchewan arrived at K+S Potash Canada’s (KSPC) potash handling and storage facility in Port Moody, British Columbia. The almost 2-km-long unit train was loaded with about 13,000 metric tons of MOP standard potash and was pulled by four Canadian Pacific (CP) locomotives. The 1,800-km-long route through the Rocky Mountains took three days.

Since the end of July, several smaller trains have already transported the potash produced from Bethune to Vancouver.

“With this first major rail transport we have reached another milestone,” said Burkhard Lohr, chairman, K+S AG. “As planned, we will have capacity to produce up to 2 million mt at the Bethune mine annually by the end of the year.”

The arrival of the first unit train also marks a significant milestone for CP. It connected the Bethune mine to the existing rail network with a new, 30-km-long link. For CP, this was the largest rail infrastructure project since the mid-1980s.