Cliffs Natural Resources

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Cliffs Natural Resources describes itself as "the largest producer of iron ore pellets in North America, a major supplier of direct-shipping lump and fines iron ore out of Australia, and a significant producer of metallurgical coal."[1]

Cliffs Buys INR Energy

On July 6, 2010, Cliffs Natural Resources Inc. announced that it had agreed to pay $757 million for the West Virginia coal operations of closely held INR Energy LLC, raising its production to nearly 11 million tons by 2012. The INR operations include the underground Powellton and Chilton-Dingess mines and the Toney Fork #2 open pit. The assets will generate about $300 million in revenue and $100 million of earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization in 2011, Cliffs said. Sales will be more than $400 million and Ebitda will be about $175 million in 2012, it said.[2]

The Cleveland-based Cliffs is North America’s largest producer of iron ore, which is used in steelmaking furnaces. Buying INR will increase Cliffs’ output of coking coal, also a steelmaking ingredient. According to Morgan Stanley on June 23, 2010, coking coal prices will rise 52 percent from last year to average $196 a metric ton in 2010 on growth in Chinese steel production. With the INR assets, Cliffs will have the capacity to produce about 9 million tons of coal next year. Of the total output, 7 million tons is coal used by steelmakers, and 2 million tons is used at power stations. After the announcement, Cliffs rose 85 cents, or 1.8 percent, to $47.74 as of 11:34 a.m. in New York Stock Exchange composite trading.[2]

Mining Operations

On its website, Cliffs Natural Resources states that the North American "business unit is comprised of six iron ore mines in Michigan, Minnesota and Eastern Canada, and two coking coal mining complexes in West Virginia and Alabama."[1] These are:

The Asia Pacific business unit comprises the Koolyanobbing and Cockatoo Island iron ore mines in Western Australia and the Sonoma Coal Project in Queensland which produces coking and thermal coal mine.[1]

The Latin American business unit "includes a 30% interest in the Amapá Project, an iron ore project in the state of Amapá in Brazil, as well as a number of smaller greenfield projects not yet in production."[1]

Methane leak at Cliffs coal mine causes no injuries

On August 13, 2012 a methane leak occurred at the Cliffs Natural Resources' Pinnacle mine complex but no injuries were reported.[3]


Cliffs Natural Resources spent $80,000 in the second half of the year on lobbying activities by its in-house staff Dana W. Byrne and Patrick Bloom.[4]

Contact Details

200 Public Square, Suite 3300,
Cleveland, OH 44114-2544
Phone: 216-694-5700

Articles and Resources


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 "Business Profile", Cliffs Natural Resources website, accessed March 2009.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Simon Casey, "Cliffs to Buy INR Coal Operations for $757 Million" Bloomberg Business Week, July 6, 2010.
  3. "Methane leak at Cliffs coal mine causes no injuries" Reuters, August 17, 2012.
  4. "Cliffs Natural Resources Inc", Center for Public Integrity, accessed March 2009.

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