There’s an article on the WSJ web site, I sssume it will be in tomorrow’s paper edition. No hard news, just a story about coal’s comeback in the Illinois Basin, at the expense of Central App. Illinois Basin coal seams tend to be thicker than CAAP’s, so mining them is cheaper than mining in CAPP. The article says that mining coal in the IB is half as expensive as mining it in CAPP (nonunion labor helps), which makes it cheaper to use even though transportation costs to the utilities are higher. IB’s coal has higher sulfur content, but with utilities using scrubbers, this is less of a problem.
Anyway, the article projects that IB will outproduce CAPP in coal within the next few years.
BTW, the article is about steam coal, not met.
Unfortunately for NRP, 45% of its steam coal reserves are in CAPP, while only 19% are in IB.
The article is consistent with comments from NRP about its CAPP lessees cutting back production. It is also consistent with ARLP’s (which is mostly IB) recent results. Maybe we’ll hear what NRP has to say about current developments.