Coal Age

OCT-NOV 2017

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Page 8 of 51

October/November 2017 7 news continued "The Obama administration pushed the bounds of their au- thority so far with the CPP that the Supreme Court issued a his- toric stay of the rule, preventing its devastating effects to be im- posed on the American people while the rule is being challenged in court," Pruitt said. "We are committed to righting the wrongs of the Obama administration by cleaning the regulatory slate. Any replacement rule will be done carefully, properly, and with humil- ity, by listening to all those affected by the rule." The CPP was put on hold in February 2016, when the U.S. Su- preme Court issued an unprecedented, historic stay of the rule, Pruitt said. "The CPP ignored states' concerns and eroded longstanding and important partnerships that are a necessary part of achiev- ing positive environmental outcomes," Pruitt said. "We can now assess whether further regulatory action is warranted; and, if so, what is the most appropriate path forward, consistent with the Clean Air Act and principles of cooperative federalism." The CPP required regulated entities to take actions "outside the fence line." Traditionally, EPA Section 111 rules were based on measures that could be applied to, for, and at a particular facil- ity, also referred to as "inside the fence line" measures. Prior to the CPP being issued, every single Section 111 rule on the books, including a handful of existing source rules and around 100 new- source rules, obeyed this limit. The EPA has now sent the NPRM to the Federal Register for publication. Upon publication, the public will have 60 days to submit comments. The repeal package includes: 1. The "preamble," which lays out the proposed legal interpre- tation, policy implications, and a summary of the cost-ben- efits analysis of the proposed repeal; and 2. The "Regulatory Impact Analysis (RIA)," an in-depth cost- benefit technical analysis. The Trump administration estimates the proposed repeal could provide up to $33 billion in avoided compliance costs in 2030. The previous administration compared U.S. costs to an esti- mate of supposed global benefits, and failed to follow well-estab- lished economic procedures in estimating those benefits. The Obama administration relied heavily on reductions in oth- er pollutants emitted by power plants, essentially hiding the true net cost of the CPP by claiming benefits from reducing pollutants that had nothing to do with the rule's stated purpose, the EPA said. The Obama administration counted "energy efficiency" re- sults of their rule as an avoided cost, resulting in a cost estimate being considerably lower than it would have been if they used the Office of Management and Budget's longstanding requirements, the EPA said. Forthcoming is an Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that will be reflective of an approach to regulatory action ground- ed within the authority provided by the statute, the EPA said. Luminant to Retire Monticello Plant Luminant recently announced its plan to retire its Monticello power plant in Titus County, Texas. In total, approximately 1,800 megawatts (MW ) of power will be taken offline in January. The company estimates that approximately 200 employees will be im- pacted by Monticello's retirement. pated. It would end in the 2020s, but if modernized, it could serve for another 20 years. Mooiplaats Colliery Sold to MCH At the end of September, Coal of Africa Ltd. (CoAL) sold the Mooiplaats Colliery to a consortium of investors, known as MCH, for R179.9 million ($13.2 million). MCH members include young black professionals, future Mooiplaats Colliery employees, communities, To The Point Growth Specialists Proprietary Ltd. and experienced coal mining executives, including Don Turvey. The consortium is funded by the newly established Last Mile Fund created by Africa Rainbow Capital, Bernard Swanepoel, Sipho Nkosi and Clinton Halsey. MCH's structure is compliant with the proposed requirements of the cur- rently suspended third version of the South African Mining Charter. "The sale of the Mooiplaats Colliery is the final step in the com- pany's balance sheet restructuring strategy setting the course for CoAL to become a self-sufficient mid-tier coal mining company," said David Brown, CEO of CoAL. "The disposal will yield annual operational cost savings of approximately $1.4 million and the [the proceeds of the sale] will be used to settle Ferret, our Mooiplaats Black Economic Empowerment partner, funding for further devel- opment of the flagship Makhado Project or the potential acquisi- tion of a cash generating asset. The sale also frees up valuable in- house human resources, facilitating additional focus on Makhado, ensuring the asset can be brought to production optimally." The Mooiplaats Colliery is a thermal coal colliery situated in the Ermelo coalfields, adjacent to the re-commissioned Camden Power Station operated by state power utility Eskom. The underground Mooiplaats Colliery was developed by CoAL from an abandoned box-cut in early 2008 with the first coal extracted in the third quar- ter of 2009. Mining was undertaken by a contract miner until June 2011 and, following an operational assessment, CoAL retained the existing workforce and equipment, and commenced operating the mine. The reduction in global thermal coal prices from 2013 and rapidly increasing logistics costs resulted in the Mooiplaats Col- liery being placed under care and maintenance in October 2013, and this status continues to present day. Iran's Coal Output Increases Iran's two major coal companies produced 303,440 metric tons (mt) of clean coal in the five months since the beginning of the current fiscal year (March 21-August 22), recording a 36% growth com- pared with last year's similar period, according to the Iranian Mines and Mining Industries Development and Renovation Organization. The majority of the production originated from the Tabas Parvadeh Coal Co., which produced 262,818 mt. The Central Alborz Coal Co.'s output totaled 40,622 tons for the same period. The South Khorasan Province's Tabas region is home to about 55%-76% of Iran's coal reserves, which have been estimated at 2.5 billion mt. Canada's Sherritt Fined for Environmental Incident A second coal-mining company in four months is being hit with a seven-figure penalty for polluting incidents that impacted fish in tributaries of the Athabasca River east of Jasper National Park in Alberta, according to The Globe and Mail. Sherritt International Corp. agreed to pay a fine of $1 million after pleading guilty in provincial court to three counts under the federal Fisheries Act. The Toronto-based company was charged five years ago due to incidents where wastewater considered toxic to Continued on p. 9... Continued from p. 5...

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