Final Mine Safety Rules Adopted by Safety Board

Throughout the past year, the West Virginia Board of Coal Mine Health & Safety has been updating the body of administrative law governing underground, surface and surface areas of underground coal mining.

The Board’s objective is to update, consolidate or reduce the number of rules affecting coal mine safety that have been affected by recent legislative activity and the enactment of Coal Jobs and Safety Acts over the past five years.

Earlier this week, the Board approved the five sets of Administrative Rules for final promulgation. These rules were proposed for public comment last year and will become effective on March 27th.

Weekly Coal Production / Consumption Report (Feb .20 Update)

Coal production declined week over week across the nation as production was impacted by transportation delays and difficulties associated with the extremely cold weather.

West Virginia coal production slipped again week over week, declining by -15.5%  Production from the NAPP region of the state decreased by -17% and W.Va. CAPP production declined by -13.3%.  National coal production decreased by -10%, with production from the entire Appalachian region declining by just over -10%.

WV Coal Association Intervenes in AEP Rate Case to Keep State Coal-Fired Power Plants Operating

Charleston, W.Va. – The West Virginia Coal Association filed a motion with the West Virginia Public Service Commission on Friday, Feb. 19 to intervene in a case involving the John Amos Power Plant (Putnam Co.), Mountaineer Power Plant (Mason Co.) and Mitchell Power Plant (Marshall Co.) to mandate the Ohio based, parent utility, American Electric Power (AEP), to continue operating the state-regulated plants throughout their planned operating life cycle.

“These plants have provided the state and region an enormous infusion of tax dollars and revenues for decades and more importantly keep thousands of West Virginians gainfully employed,” said Chris Hamilton, President of the West Virginia Coal Association. “The real rate payers of our state – the power plant workers and area residents – have kept these facilities in tip-top operating condition which should assure that these plants continue to operate for their planned life cycle and not close prematurely because of growing Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) concerns or at the whims of the Sierra Club or other environmental groups.”

Weekly Production / Consumption Report (Feb .13 Update) *Dec. 2020 Coal Export Data*

West Virginia coal production decreased from last week by -6.65%.  Production from the NAPP region of the state decreased by -5.3% and CAPP production declined by -8.2%.  National coal production decreased by -9.35%.  Production from the entire Appalachian region declined by -10.05% from the previous week.  Production from the entire NAPP thermal region declined by -10.43% and implied national met production decreased by -9.43%.  

Year to date, West Virginia coal production is off by -24% from 2020.  -5.20% in the NAPP region of the state and -22.4% in the CAPP region of state.  National coal production is down by -11.8% from the same time in 2020.  Coal production from the entire NAPP thermal region is down by -15.6% and implied national met production is off by -17.55% from the same time last year.  

Chris Hamilton, President, WV Coal Association, Invites V.P. Kamala Harris to West Virginia to Meet Miners

Dear Madame Vice President:

Congratulations on your election victory and thank you for your service to the United States.

We watched with interest your recent interview on WSAZ television, which covers central-southern West Virginia, in late January. During the interview you highlighted the President’s “American Rescue Plan” and its goal of defeating COVID-19, providing relief to families, lifting children out of poverty, and creating jobs. These are admirable and necessary goals, and we applaud the Administration’s pursuit of them.

During the interview you highlighted the Administration’s strategy for rebuilding our economy, which included transitioning coal miners to jobs rebuilding our infrastructure and transferring their unique skill set to jobs in clean energy.