IEEFA Research

IEEFA Update: How Will Westmoreland Coal’s Deepening Spiral End?

IEEFA Update: How Will Westmoreland Coal’s Deepening Spiral End?

Disappearing Market Capitalization and Unsustainable Debt

We’ve just published a research brief of interest to any person, community, business, or investor with ties to Westmoreland Coal Co. The brief—“Westmoreland Coal Is in Trouble”—lays out how the company, which produces coal for electricity generation, is hobbled by debt, is losing customers, has suffered a catastrophic drop in stock price, and appears to […]

February 16, 2018 Read More →

More News and Commentary

Powder River Basin customers burned 42% less coal last year

E&E News ($): Customers of mines in Wyoming and Montana burned as much as 42% less coal last year, according to a new analysis estimating which operations are most at risk of closing. The Powder River Basin mines about 40% of the country’s coal, but the region’s sprawling open pits have seen production cut by […]

May 20, 2021 Read More →
IEEFA U.S.: Peabody’s $1.42 billion write-down concedes coal mines have little value and dim future

IEEFA U.S.: Peabody’s $1.42 billion write-down concedes coal mines have little value and dim future

Trouble at biggest mine in Powder River Basin speaks volumes about state of industry

Peabody Energy, the world’s largest privately owned coal company and the biggest U.S. coal producer, has finally acknowledged a long-apparent reality: Thermal coal mines in the U.S. have little value anymore and not much of a future.  The company said as much earlier this month when it slashed the book value of the largest coal […]

August 6, 2020 Read More →

Colstrip’s new coal supply contract likely to raise price of plant’s electricity generation

Billings Gazette: Colstrip Power Plant will continue receiving coal from Rosebud Mine under a six-year contract signed by all but one of the plant’s owners this wee The contract, five years in the making, was signed with just weeks left on the coal arrangement between the mine and the power plant. The terms assure the […]

December 6, 2019 Read More →

S&P: Market capitalization of top U.S. coal companies has fallen 59% in 2019

S&P Global Market Intelligence ($): The market capitalization of five of the top 10 U.S. coal companies was sliced by more than half from early January to mid-November 2019.  Those top 10 producers’ market value totaled about $4.42 billion as of Nov. 22, a 59.4% drop from $10.88 billion as of Jan. 8, according to […]

December 5, 2019 Read More →

Enviro groups sue to block expansion of Rosebud mine in Montana

Montana Free Press: A group of environmental groups filed a lawsuit in federal court in Billings Monday challenging the proposed expansion of the Rosebud Coal Mine, which supplies coal to the Colstrip power plant. In June, the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement approved the expansion, which will allow […]

November 21, 2019 Read More →
IEEFA U.S.: Peabody abandons longtime Native American workforce before reclamation of Kayenta coal complex in Arizona
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IEEFA U.S.: Peabody abandons longtime Native American workforce before reclamation of Kayenta coal complex in Arizona

Hundreds laid off with plans to replace employees with lower-paid contractors

Aug. 5, 2019 (IEEFA U.S.) — As Peabody Energy ceases production this month at the Kayenta Mine complex in northern Arizona, the company plans to abandon its long-time workforce even as it faces a vast amount of reclamation responsibility in the area. The company is abruptly discarding some 300 mine-complex employees this month, according to a […]

S&P: Announced U.S. coal-fired plant retirements to cut annual demand by more than 65 million tons

S&P Global Market Intelligence ($): U.S. coal producers delivered 65.5 million tons of coal, about 8.7% of the coal mined in 2018, to power plants set to retire between 2019 and 2032, according to an analysis by S&P Global Market Intelligence. The analysis excluded plants that retired before July 4 in 2019. Meanwhile, only one […]

August 5, 2019 Read More →

Auction for bankrupt Blackjewel mines in Kentucky, Virginia, West Virginia and Wyoming could commence this week

AP: A federal judge on Friday approved a bidding process for mines owned by bankrupt coal operator Blackjewel LLC. U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Frank Volk in Charleston agreed with a motion by Blackjewel on a proposal made by Bristol, Tennessee-based Contura Energy. Contura has offered $20.6 million as the stalking horse bidder for three mines owned […]

July 29, 2019 Read More →

IEEFA U.S.: Spate of coal bankruptcies raises risks for utilities – may hasten more plant retirements

Financial distress among mining companies could add momentum to electricity-generation transition

The chaotic collapse of Blackjewel and the unexpected closure of its mines in both the Powder River Basin and Appalachia, as well as a spate of other recent coal-mining bankruptcies, should serve as a wake-up call for utilities dependent on coal-fired generation. Coal companies serving the electricity supply sector are barely treading water while falling […]

July 22, 2019 Read More →

Moody’s: Coal could drop to 11% of U.S. electric generation by 2030

Platts: Demand for U.S. thermal coal will “erode significantly” between 2020 and 2030 as total use for U.S. power generation could fall to as little as 11% based on scheduled and likely retirements, Moody’s Investors Service wrote in a report released Wednesday. Mines in the Powder River Basin are expected to be the hardest hit […]

July 11, 2019 Read More →