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North Antelope Rochelle Mine

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North Antelope Rochelle Mine in the Powder River Basin is the second largest coal mining complex in the U.S. It is a surface operation located in Gillette, Wyoming, owned by Peabody Energy.[1]

Its 2008 production was 97.5 million short tons.[1] In 2010, the mine extracted an estimated 105.2 million tons of coal, an increase of about 7 million tons compared to 2009, according to EIA data.[2]

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Mine Data

  • MSHA ID: 4801353
  • Operator: Powder River Coal LLC
  • Controller: Peabody Energy
  • Union:
  • County: Campbell
  • State: WY
  • Latitude: 43°34'N
  • Longitude: 105°17'W
  • 2007 Production (short tons): 91,523,280
  • Coal Type: Bituminous
  • Mining Method: Surface
  • Mine Status: Active
  • Average No. of Employees: 935

Production

The North Rochelle-Antelope mine shipped 10 million short tons of coal in March 2011, which set a monthly production record for the mine. The mine, while largest operation in the country, is the second largest in the U.S. as measured by production numbers, loading 641 trains with a total of 10 million tons of coal, according to Peabody's vice president of transportation John Hull. The mine usually produces 8 to 9 million tons a month.[3]

Expansion

On September 29, 2006, BTU Western Resources, Inc. (BTU), a subsidiary of Peabody Energy, filed an application with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) for federal coal leases in three maintenance tracts encompassing over 5,000 acres and nearly 600 million tons of coal. The tracts are located adjacent to the North Antelope Rochelle Mine and are designed to extend the mine's size and life.

On October 12, 2007, BTU filed a request with the BLM to modify its application and increase the lease area and coal volume to approximately nearly 9,000 acres and 1.2 million tons of coal. BLM determined that the application would be processed as two separate leasing tracts: North Porcupine lease and South Porcupine lease.[4]

On June 28, 2012 the BLM is holding a competitive coal lease sale of the North Porcupine Coal Tract, a 6,364.28-acre area containing an estimated 721.15 million tons of mineable coal, will be offered for lease to the qualified high bidder of the highest cash amount.[5]

Peabody sues over well blocking expansion of Powder River Basin coal mine

In June 2011, Peabody sued over an oil and gas well that was in the way of a coal mine they own in the Powder River Basin. Peabody Energy, through its wholly owned subsidiary BTU Western Resources Inc., sued a part-owner of the well in federal court in Wyoming in late June 2011, claiming the owner unreasonably rejected a deal to allow expansion of the company’s North Antelope Rochelle Mine.

Peabody sued Wild Hare LLC, whose registered agent was Burton K. Reno Jr. However, Reno said Wild Hare LLC is not the owner of the well, just a Wyoming corporation with a name similar to Wild Hare Limited Partnership, which Reno said is the well’s true owner.[6]

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References

  1. 1.0 1.1 EIA, "Major U.S. Coal Mines," Energy Information Administration, November 2009
  2. Dustin Bleizeffer, "Rebound: 2010 showed modest recovery for coal" K2 Technologies, January 5, 2011.
  3. "Report: Powder River Basin coal mine sets production record" Jeremy Fugleberg, Star-Tribune, April 13, 2011.
  4. "Record of Decision: Environmental Impact Statement for the South Porcupine Coal Lease Application WYW176095," BLM, August 2011.
  5. "Federal Coal Lease Sale Set for June 28" U.S. Department of of Interior Bureau of Land Management, June 6, 2012
  6. "Peabody sues over well blocking expansion of Powder River Basin coal mine" Jeremy Fugleberg, Billings Gazette, June 26, 2011.

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