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U.S. Coal Production, Exports and Prices Increased in 2017

EIA expects total 2017 U.S. coal production to be 773 million short tons (MMst), 45 MMst higher than in 2016 and the largest year-over-year tonnage increase since 2001. Coal prices across the United States rose as well, especially for Central Appalachian coal. An increase in demand for U.S. coal exports more than offset a slight decline in U.S. coal consumption, contributing to higher coal production in 2017. 


Coal production in 2017 in the United States was higher than in 2016 in each of the five major coal-producing regions. The largest regional increase in annual coal production was in the Powder River Basin, where production increased 8% (26 MMst) in 2017. 


EIA attributes 2017 increases in U.S. coal production in part to the bankruptcy-caused restructuring of several major coal producers, which resulted in lower production costs. Even though U.S. coal consumption decreased, higher worldwide demand for U.S. coal led to greater coal production.

International demand for U.S. coal was driven by Asian and European countries. EIA expects total U.S. coal exports to reach 95 MMst in 2017, a 58% increase from 2016. Approximately 31 MMst of coal is expected to be exported to Asia in 2017, nearly double the volume exported in 2016. U.S. coal exports to Asia increased as China, Japan, and India looked to offset disruptions to their supplies of Australian coal caused by Cyclone Debbie in April 2017. Preliminary estimates show U.S. coal exports to Europe reaching 40 MMst in 2017, an increase of 13 MMst from the 2016 level.

To continue reading, click here to view the full article on CoalZoom.com. 

CoalZoom.com - Your Foremost Source for Coal News


Carbon Capture Project Advances With Federal Funding

The U.S. Department of Energy awarded $6 million to researchers for early design work on a system to capture carbon dioxide from an existing North Dakota coal-fired power plant.

The grant money will go to advance Project Tundra, a retrofit of Minnkota Power Cooperative’s Milton R. Young Station near Center to capture 90 percent of emissions from one of the plant’s two units. The project is a partnership between Allete Clean Energy, Minnkota Power and BNI Coal, as well as the University of North Dakota’s Energy and Environmental Research Center.

“This technology holds the promise of reducing or eliminating emissions at our existing power plants in a cost-effective manner, which means we can continue to have reliable and affordable energy while also advancing better environmental stewardship,” Sen. John Hoeven, R-N.D., said in a statement.

Project Tundra is modeled after a similar projectt near Houston, Texas, called Petra Nova. Petra Nova is a commercial-scale carbon capture facility at NRG's WA Parish power plant.

John Harju, vice president for strategic partnerships at EERC, said his researchers have been testing the Petra Nova technology in their lab to ensure it can work with North Dakota’s lignite coal burned at the Young Station. This new funding, along with state and industry money, will pay for parallel efforts to calculate a more detailed cost estimate for the full scale project. 

To continue reading, click here to view the full article on CoalZoom.com. 

CoalZoom.com - Your Foremost Source for Coal News



 NMA Urges Meaningful, Comprehensive Action to Ensure Secure and Reliable Supplies of Domestic Minerals

The National Mining Association (NMA) today urged the administration to broaden the scope of its efforts to implement the recently-issued Executive Order (EO), “A Federal Strategy to Ensure Secure and Reliable Supplies of Critical Minerals.”

Hal Quinn

The EO, issued Dec. 20, 2017, raised alarm bells about heavy U.S. reliance on imports of certain mineral commodities that are vital to the nation's security and economic prosperity. The EO notes that this reliance creates a “strategic vulnerability for both [the U.S.] economy and military to adverse foreign government action, natural disaster, and other events that can disrupt supply of these key minerals.” In a notice published today, the U.S. Geological Survey provided a preliminary list of minerals that it considers critical pursuant to the EO.

NMA urges the Department of Interior (DOI) to broaden its view of “criticality.” “All minerals are ‘critical’ when we need them and can’t get them,” said Hal Quinn, NMA president and CEO. “DOI should act to address the greatest threat to U.S. mineral security: the broken domestic mining permitting process.”

To continue reading, click here to view the full article on CoalZoom.com. 

CoalZoom.com - Your Foremost Source for Coal News 


Massive Sale of Underground Mining Machinery Will Provide Lower Cost Per Ton

A massive sale of used underground mining machinery is taking place to make available quality equipment at a very reasonable price. As optimism in the coal industry increases, this is an excellent opportunity to purchase equipment at a highly competitive price thus making possible a lower cost per ton and providing advantages over competitors.

The range of continuous mining equipment includes: 1- Joy 14CM10AA miner; 5 - Fairchild Continuous Miners; and 5 - Fairchild Continuous Haulage Systems. There is 1 - Fairchild 35C-WH Ground Based Battery System and 10 - Fairchild On Board Battery Systems. Roof bolters are available too. The range includes 1 - Fletcher LTDO-13- B, C-F Low Profile Single Boom Bolter; 1 - Fletcher Roof Ranger ll Twin Boom (Crawler) Bolter 13-B, C-F Low Profile; and 3 - Fletcher Roof Ranger ll Twin Boom Bolter (Rubber Tire) B, C-F Low Profile.

Other equipment includes: 1 - A.L. Lee Mini-Mac Scoop 30HP; and 2 - Cogar Feeder Breakers CFB50C15A1HDH. Belt conveyor equipment includes: 26 - Double Drive 36” Gear Driven Belt Drives; and 3 - Fairchild Double Drive 36” Lo-Lo Drives 75 HP.

The range of vehicles includes: 2 - J.B. Long Rock Dusters and 17 - J.B. Long Inspector’s Friends. There are 5 - Damascus Man Trip Transporters. Electrical equipment includes 4 - Line Power 750 KVA Power Centers.

For further information, please contact Ken Mosely 540-235-2445 or email ken.mosely42@gmail.com.

CoalZoom.com - Your Foremost Source for Coal News



 The New Luddites

If any further evidence is needed to substantiate widespread voter frustration with Washington gridlock, consider the current reaction to the administration’s infrastructure initiative. “Infrastructure” improvement is as close as we’ll get to a bipartisan call to action. So what’s to complain about – except who will pay and how much? 

Now we know. Almost immediately “permit reform”– necessary to get on with the job of rebuilding worn out infrastructure – is a dog whistle to the green lobby. For them, “efficiency” is problematic: good in theory, bad in practice. It poses a mortal threat to their franchise, which is manipulating the machinery of regulation and bureaucracy to slow or stop projects.


The proposal to streamline the NEPA process “is nothing more than another scam that would destroy the environment, privatize our public works, increase taxes on the middle class and bulldoze communities’ ability to have a say in the projects happening in their own backyard,” shouts the League of Conservation Voters. 


This is the hysteria that greets a proposal to streamline a process that today requires more time to permit a new mine than it did to build the Panama Canal. If the French were saddled with our permit process, Gustave Eiffel would still be waiting for the “oui” to build his iconic tower.

To continue reading, click here to view the full article on CoalZoom.com.   

CoalZoom.com - Your Foremost Source for Coal News


MSHA Assistant Secretary to Speak at SME Annual Conference

The Health & Safety Division of SME has announced that David Zatezalo, Assistant Secretary of Labor for Mine Safety and Health (MSHA), will address the Division’s Plenary Session on Monday, February 26, at the 2018 SME Annual Conference & Expo and 91st Annual Meeting of the SME-MN Section. 

David Zatezalo

Titled “What really works in safety management in the mining industry,” this plenary session will also give attendees the opportunity to hear from several high-profile speakers from the global mining industry, including:

Tom Hethmon, Safety & Health SSR Mining Inc.

Mike Wright, International United Steel Workers

Patrick James, Lehigh Hanson

Matthew Pederson-Howard, Peabody Energy

Jeff Kohler, Penn State University

To continue reading, click here to view the full article on CoalZoom.com.   

CoalZoom.com - Your Foremost Source for Coal News


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