Calgon reworks the coal blends for activated carbon production

Calgon Carbon (NYSE: CCC), which makes activated carbon from coal feedstock, said Dec. 13 that it has come up with new coal blends for that feedstock.

Calgon provided an update on its roadmap for value creation in a letter to its shareholders from Randy Dearth, President and Chief Executive Officer. One of the initiatives he talked about was the feedstock program.

He emphasized the importance of securing high performing coal with the lowest total cost of ownership to produce activated carbon at the company’s two “virgin” plants and to increase the amount of coal under long-term contract. Virgin denotes a plant that makes new activated carbon, as opposed to a plant that reactivates used carbon.

In order to determine the right price point, Calgon studied purchase costs, inbound transportation, handling, plant productivity, and first time quality of activated carbon. The results identified several bituminous coals/blends that perform better than Calgon’s traditional coals/blends.

“I’m very pleased that we have recently contracted with two highly regarded coal companies for the supply of bituminous coal that meets our cost/performance criteria,” Dearth wrote, without identifying those coal companies. “The terms are competitive with the current metallurgical coal market and are structured to protect Calgon Carbon from the frequent large swings of this coal market. Both contracts will begin immediately and expire at the end of 2018. And as a result, our coal under contract for that term is now approximately 70%.”

Calgon Carbon is the world’s largest producer of granular activated carbon and supplies more than 100 types of activated carbon products – in granular, powdered, pelletized and cloth form – for more than 700 distinct applications. Activated carbon, for one thing, is increasingly used to control mercury emissions from coal-fired power plants. Headquartered in Pittsburgh, Pa., Calgon employs about 1,100 people at more than 15 manufacturing, reactivation, and equipment facilities in the U.S., Asia, and in Europe, where Calgon Carbon is known as Chemviron Carbon.

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.