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Mining People Magazine




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“We know how much power a coal

plant can generate on any given day

– you can plan around that kind of reli-

ability. By contrast, due to the whims of

the weather, there is no way of knowing

how much electricity renewals will gen-

erate on a given day. And yet, markets

are treating renewables as if they offer

the same kind of predictable power. The

whole market system is being under-

mined, and instead of decisive action to

address the problem, warnings are either

being dismissed or met with hand wring-

ing. Electricity price spikes appear to be

the tremors foreshadowing the shock

to come. As long as electricity markets

continue to treat renewable sources of

energy as equals to their dispatchable,

baseload counterparts, it won’t be a mat-

ter of if we see a catastrophic reliability

crisis but when.”

– Count on Coal

“According to analysts, by 2021 the

US is expected to become a net en-

ergy exporter for the first time in ap-

proximately 70 years.


this should help minimize OPEC mem-

bers’ influence over US domestic and

foreign policy. Perhaps more important,

it should thwart Russia’s ongoing policy

of using energy as a controlling influence

over its European neighbors by providing

an alternative source for Europe’s energy


– Gerald E. (Gee) Lofstead III.

“West Virginia continues to thrive in

the export market. In 2018, West Vir-

ginia exported $8.1 billion in materials

and finished goods around the world.

That was a 14.2 percent increase from

2017 and almost double the US increase

in exports. Leading the way was coal; the

state exported $4.3 billion in coal to 35

counties last year. The coal exports were

fueled by a worldwide demand for met-

allurgical coal for steel making. Those

exports also continue to help rebuild the

state’s coal industry and show the ever-

growing importance of exports as US

coal usage declines.”

–Mark E. Heath, Energy Industry In-

sights, Issue 11.

“A study, titled “The Coal Cost Cross-

over,” suggests that new local wind

and solar power (within 35 miles of

existing coal plants) could replace

approximately 74 percent of the US

coal fleet at an immediate savings to


The findings have grabbed

headlines. They’re also a fairytale. Before

we dive into the problems with the study,

consider a question. If given a choice of

two utilities: one that provides electricity

24-7, and one that provides electricity

some of the time, without any guarantee

into when the electricity would be avail-

able, which one would you choose? The

choice is obvious, but the way electricity

markets are currently structured, logic

has been turned on its head.”

– Count on Coal.

“We applaud President

Trump taking action (a

presidential permit au-

thorizing construction

and operation of the

Keystone XL)

to expe-

dite the path to construc-

tion of the much-needed

and long-overdue Keystone XL pipeline.

After years of senseless delays, we’re

hopeful that this pipeline, which is an eco-

nomic no-brainer, will finally be built. By

issuing this permit, Trump is reaffirming

that he will not play political games but

will take decisive action to push forward

this pipeline that will bring jobs and eco-

nomic abundance to the region. The Key-

stone XL has gone through all the neces-

sary environmental reviews. It is time for

the delays to end and for the pipeline to

be built.”

–Erin Amsberry. American Energy


“Over the past several years, admin-

istrative and legal challenges to natu-

ral gas transmission pipelines have

stalled the completion of the Constitu-

tion Pipeline to the Northeast region,

the Mountain Valley Pipeline to South-

western Virginia, and the Atlantic Coast

Pipeline terminating in North Carolina.

These repeated efforts by environmental

advocates and state governments have

dramatically increased the cost of these

pipeline projects, as well as deprived

residential and commercial consumers

of the benefit of affordable and clean-

burning shale gas from Appalachia. Now

it appears the Trump administration will

attempt to promote energy infrastructure,

including these gas pipeline projects,

through a series of executive orders. Al-

though such executive orders many not

be a totally effective means to complete

these much need projects, they will at

least provide momentum toward com-

pleting infrastructure necessary to assure

energy independence for our country.”

– William M. Herlihy, Energy Industry In-


“For America to oper-

ate from a position of

strength, we must have

the critical energy in-

frastructure to deliver

affordable energy to

power our lives.


Executive Orders from

President Trump is an attempt to make

necessary changes to ensure federal

statute is properly interpreted and fol-

lowed, and make certain that politically

motivated delays blocking pipeline in-

frastructure come to an end. It’s time to

let America’s energy flow freely through

pipelines which are a proven, safe, and

efficient way to transport our resources.”

– AEA President Tom Pyle.

“We’re on the rebound from 2016,

which was our lowest point.

In 2017,

we picked up around 10 to 12 million

tons and then picked up another 8 to 10

million the next year. At the end of 2018,

we had produced right round 100 million

tons. There are about 14,000 full-time

coal miners working in West Virginia

who are supported by around 35,000


– Bill Raney, president, West

Virginia Coal Association.