In honor of the commitment and courage of mine rescuers past and present, the Mine Safety and Health Administration commemorated the Third Annual Mine Rescue Day on Friday, Oct. 30 by showcasing the latest emergency response equipment and technology at the National Mine Health and Safety Academy in Beaver, West Virginia.

"Mine rescue is among the most challenging emergency work that is undertaken in our country," said Assistant Secretary of Labor for Mine Safety and Health Joseph Main. "When a mine disaster strikes, mine rescue volunteers, brave men and women, don't hesitate to answer the call, be it day or night. Many times these great volunteers from the mining community travel miles in the dark and under arduous and treacherous conditions, navigating mine workings sometimes filled with debris and explosive gases to find missing miners or recover those who did not survive. That's what they do. They are our heroes."

Bill Raney, president of the West Virginia Coal Association, echoed Main's comments.
"Our coal miners are the best in the world and our safety teams are the best in the world as well," Raney said. "They go where no one else wants to go. They go to the danger and they are our angels, and this event salutes their skill and courage -- and through them it honors every coal miner."

WVCA member, Blackhawk Mining, LLC, finalized the acquisition of six Patriot Coal mining complexes in southern West Virginia, including the Wells, Panther, Paint Creek, Rocklick, Kanawha Eagle and Midland Trail complexes. After interviews and briefings in Charleston for all former Patriot employees at these complexes, Jesse Parrish, vice president of Blackhawk Mining, said they hope to have the majority of them rehired. 

Arch Coal, Inc. and its operating subsidiary Mingo Logan Coal Company were recognized by the U.S. Department of Interior's Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement) for demonstrating exemplary interaction, communication and involvement with the surrounding communities.

The 2015 Good Neighbor Award was presented to the Mountain Laurel complex for its ongoing community service efforts that included outdoor education and stewardship programs which provided outdoor experiences for community members who otherwise may not have had the opportunity, an annual Earth Day celebration with a local elementary school, the donation of Rockhouse Lake Recreation Area to the Logan County Commission, and the ongoing participation in the Spruce River Community Advisory Panel - a long-time partnership that works to improve the greater Sharples, W.Va. community. Moreover, employees continued their tradition of giving back to the community by donating volunteer time and more than $35,000 to the annual Christmas Giving Program. The donations allowed the mine to brighten the holiday season for students at eight schools in five counties, a local nursing facility and a number of underprivileged families in the area.

 


Congratulations to the new officers for 2016 of The National Mining Association (NMA), who were elected at its late October Board of Directors meeting in Washington.  

·        Chairman – Kevin Crutchfield, Chairman and CEO, Alpha Natural Resources, LLC

·        Vice Chairman – Phillips Baker, President and CEO, Hecla Mining Company

·        President – Hal Quinn, President and CEO of NMA

·        Secretary – Bruce Watzman, NMA Senior Vice President for Regulatory Affairs

·        Treasurer – Roger Roberts, NMA Senior Vice President for Administration

·        Asst. Secretary – Katie Sweeney, Senior Vice President and General Counsel

“Energy policy needs to ensure all Americans have affordable and reliable electricity to meet everyday challenges and to help build a strong foundation of economic success. Regardless of where you stand politically, this plan fails to meet that threshold.”

Washington, D.C. – New analysis from NERA Economic Consulting shows the Environmental Protection Agency’s power plan comes with a hefty price tag that could approach $300 billion and raise electricity prices in each of the 47 states subject to the new regulation.  Despite these enormous costs, the rule does nothing to prevent global climate change.