Coal Top Stories

Anglo American output in Q3 jumps, thanks to Collahuasi

Total production climbed by 24% from Q2 on the back…

PGE to invest $19bn to meet zero-emissions goal

Poland’s largest utility seeks to invest half of that amount…

Latest Stories

US coal exports up 35% through mid-year; likely to top 100 Mt in 2011

US coal exports increased 35% to 53.6 million short tons through June 2011, according to a recent edition of NMA’s (National Mining Association) International Coal Review. Strong demand from Asia and Europe for steam and metallurgical coal is expected to push coal exports above 100 million tons by the year’s end, the highest level in nearly 20 years. NMA’s economic forecast prepared in May predicted 2011 coal exports would reach 101.5 million tons (up 24%).

Sensidyne releases new coal mine safety instrument

Sensidyne, LP, a leading manufacturer and supplier of industrial health and safety equipment, releases the CDEM-1000 for sale. The Sensidyne CDEM-1000 Coal Dust Explosibility Meter is a portable, handheld, easy-to-use instrument, designed to provide a direct indication of the potential explosibility of a coal and rock dust mixture in accordance with Title 30, Code of Federal Regulations, Part 75.403.

Xstrata’s huge thermal coal project being challenged in Australian court over impacts to Great Barrier Reef

Lawyers for Swiss mining giant Xstrata are in court today defending a massive coal project slated for Queensland. The AU$6 billion Wandoan coal mine has come under fire by environmentalists for its potential negative effects on the Great Barrier Reef. Bloomberg reports that Friends of the Earth, an international environmental lobby group, is attempting to block the mine’s approval at a trial in Brisbane that’s scheduled to take two weeks, arguing the coal exported from the project and burned overseas will add to global warming.

Battle royal for Macarthur Coal shaping up

The battle for Macarthur Coal is poised to intensify after news that Anglo American is considering a challenge to Peabody and ArcelorMittal's $4.7 billion hostile bid. Anglos, the world's fifth most valuable miner, is studying Macarthur's finances, media reported at the weekend. Anglos has been restructuring aggressively under chief executive Cynthia Carroll (pictured) and with second quarter 2011 profits of $4 billion has the necessary cash. But a rumoured joint bid with China's Citic could turn out to be the decisive factor to beat Peabody and ArcelorMittal's offer as Citic has already built up a 24% stake in Macarthur. Miners are scrambling for coal assets and coal for power-generation has averaged about $130/tonne this year from less than $100 in 2010. Coal now accounts for 30% of global energy use, the highest since 1970.

In northeast India, children are lured into coal mining

The young miners descend on rickety ladders made of branches into the makeshift coal mines dotting Jaintia Hills in northeast India, scrambling sideways into “rat hole” shafts so small that even kneeling becomes impossible. Lying horizontally, they hack away with picks and their bare hands: Human labor here is far cheaper than machines. Many wear flip-flops and shorts, their faces and lungs blackened by coal. None has a helmet. Two hours of grinding work fills a cart half the size of a coffin that they drag back, crouching, to the mine mouth, where a clerk credits their work. Most earn a dollar or two an hour.

US coal exports explode as global demand outpaces oil and gas

According to the US Energy Information Administration, coal production will fall 1.7% in 2011 hampered by widespread flooding in the west of the country. It is a steeper decline than previously forecast and the agency also predicts a further decline next year. Nevertheless, strong demand from Asia and Europe for steam and metallurgical coal has pushed US coal exports up 35% in the first half of the year and should reach above 100 million tons by year’s end, the highest level in nearly 20 years. Global coal consumption advanced 7.6% last year and at a faster pace than crude oil, natural gas and nuclear, according to statistics published by oil giant BP. Coal now accounts for 30% of global energy use, the highest since 1970.

Anglo American said to weigh counterbid for Macarthur Coal

Anglo American is exploring a bid for Macarthur Coal that would challenge Peabody Energy Corp.’s $4.9 billion offer for the Australian miner, said two people with knowledge of the matter. Anglo American, part owner of the world’s biggest platinum and diamond producers, is studying Macarthur’s finances, said one of the people, who declined to be identified as the talks are private. Buying Brisbane-based Macarthur would give Anglo steelmaking-coal mines in Australia as prices trade near a record. Peabody and its bidding partner, ArcelorMittal, took their offer directly to Macarthur shareholders after talks with the board collapsed.

Expansion of Cerrejon Coal: BHP to spend US$437 million

BHP Billiton today announced approval of a US$437 million (BHP Billiton share) investment to expand the Cerrejon Coal mine in La Guajira, Colombia. BHP Billiton’s investment represents one third of the US$1,311 million expansion to be undertaken by Cerrejon Coal, with joint venture partners Anglo American and Xstrata contributing equal investment in the project. The expansion, known as the P40 Project, will enable Cerrejon Coal’s saleable thermal coal production to increase by 8 million tonnes per annum (mtpa) to approximately 40mtpa.