4 New Met Mines Planned for Pennsylvania
At least four new underground metallurgical coal mines are planned for Pennsylvania in 2017 as the industry looks to take advantage of rising demand and prices for met coal both domestically and internationally after spending several years in the doldrums.
Rosebud Mining, Corsa Coal, Robindale Energy and AK Coal Resources all are developing new mines in the Keystone state ranging in size from several hundred thousand tons annually to nearly a million tons a year. Much, though not all, of that output will be earmarked for the seaborne export market. AK Coal, however, plans to supply coal from its new Polaris mine in Somerset County to a plant in Middletown, Ohio, owned and operated by its AK Steel parent company.
AK Coal currently produces met coal for Middletown at its North Fork deep mine also in Somerset County. Although the company was issued a final mining permit from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) for Polaris, it has not publicly released a mine construction/in-production date for the new mine.
Robindale Energy’s LCT Energy subsidiary is expected to begin producing coal later this year at its Maple Springs mine also in Somerset County. Production could start as soon as June with the mine eventually ramping up to around 500,000 tons annually. At that rate, Maple Springs has sufficient met coal reserves to last for 15 years, according to Gil Widenhofer, a Robindale vice president.