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Patriot Coal To Reduce Metallurgical Coal Production

World Coal,

Patriot Coal Corp. has announced temporary curtailments of about 85,000 tpm of metallurgical coal production in response to further weakening of market demand. The production cuts will occur at three southern West Virginia mine complexes, Kanawha Eagle, Rocklick and Wells, over the next 60 days. In total, approximately 250 employee and contractor positions will be impacted by these actions. 

"Metallurgical coal demand and pricing declined rapidly over the last two months as a result of slowdowns in economies around the world," stated Bennett K. Hatfield, Patriot president and chief operating officer. "These actions are designed to bring our production in line with expected sales and focus capital resources on our lowest cost operations as we proceed with our reorganisation."

Patriot Coal has 12 active mining complexes in Appalachia and the Illinois basin and approximately 1.9 billion t of proven and probable coal reserves, according to its website. It filed for bankruptcy in July after a mild winter and large-scale coal-to-gas switching by utilities on the back of ultralow gas prices led to weak coal demand in the US. 

Adapted from a press release by Jonathan Rowland.

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