Alpha’s Green Valley Coal unit seeks West Virginia mine permit

The Green Valley Coal unit of Alpha Natural Resources (NYSE: ANR) applied Sept. 28 at the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection for a mine permit on the Potato Hole Knob deep mine, to be located near Leivasy in Nicholas County.

The application covers a room-and-pillar job working the Sewell coal seam. This is the only pending mine permit application for Green Valley Coal.

This company doesn’t get new permits often. The DEP database shows that the latest permit issued that is currently held by Green Valley Coal came out in March 2008 for the Grassy Creek No. 2 deep mine, also located near Leivasy and working the Sewell seam. The DEP has approved Key Point Mining LLC and White Buck Coal as operators at this mine. This operation is classified by the DEP as “active, moving coal.”

With the U.S. Mine Safety and Health Administration, Green Valley Coal has one operation listed under its name, the No. 1 prep plant in Nicholas County, which was held many years ago by the defunct Lady H Coal. Listed with MSHA under White Buck Coal are the Grassy Creek No. 1 and Hominy Creek deep mines in Nicholas County, and the Pocahontas deep mine in Greenbrier County.

Green Valley, formerly part of Massey Energy, which Alpha bought in June 2011, is part of Alpha’s Brooks Run North business unit. “Brooks Run North produces coal from ten underground mines and two surface mines,” said Alpha’s Feb. 29 Form 10-K report. “The mines sell high Btu, low sulfur steam coal to eastern utilities and metallurgical coal to steel companies. The coal is transported by truck to either our Erbacon preparation plant, Green Valley preparation plant, Power Mountain preparation plant or Mammoth preparation plant, where it is cleaned, blended and loaded onto rail for shipment to customers. During 2011, Brooks Run North shipped 4.7 million tons.”

About Barry Cassell 20414 Articles
Barry Cassell is Chief Analyst for GenerationHub covering coal and emission controls issues, projects and policy. He has covered the coal and power generation industry for more than 24 years, beginning in November 2011 at GenerationHub and prior to that as editor of SNL Energy’s Coal Report. He was formerly with Coal Outlook for 15 years as the publication’s editor and contributing writer, and prior to that he was editor of Coal & Synfuels Technology and associate editor of The Energy Report. He has a bachelor’s degree from Central Michigan University.