Coal Making Headlines
Site preparation work is underway for Walter Energy’s new underground mine in Tuscaloosa County, expected to begin production in 2018.
And CanAm Coal will be mining here before long. The Canadian firm has acquired another 30 percent of Birmingham Coal & Coke, including its Old Union II permit, which allows it to begin surface mining right away on 1,100 acres.
A proposed Reed Minerals strip mine in Walker County drew a mix of environmental criticism and job prospect praise during an Alabama Surface Mining Commission meeting in Cordova.
Meanwhile Drummond International’s exports of Colombian coal slowed to a near standstill as workers struck the Fenoco railroad, which moves coal from the mines to the port. Drummond’s usual shipping of 80,000-plus tons of coal per day was all but stopped by the strike, and coal prices edged up worldwide.
A Colombian court ruled the strike illegal in mid-August and coal prices fell slightly, even before shipment resumed.
Also on the energy front, the Tennessee Valley Authority said it’s considering a plan that would adapt fuel from surplus nuclear weapons into fuel for its nuclear generators, according to reports in the Chattanooga Times Free Press.