AK Steel opening wallet in Pennsylvania

AK STEEL is planning to invest $US60 million over the next few years to develop new coal operations in Somerset County, Pennsylvania, two months after acquiring the reserves of Solar Fuel Company in a $36 million takeover.
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A Pennsylvania longwall operation. Courtesy Foundation Coal.

Donna Schmidt

Company spokesperson Alan McCoy told the Associated Press that a new entity, AK Coal Resources, would seek state mining permit approvals from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection.

That process is expected to take about 18 months.

“Capital equipment for starting up mining operations and all ancillary equipment” will make up much of the $60 million expenditure for the mines, McCoy said.

The operations will be developed between 2013 and 2015.

He did not confirm to the news service how many staff could be added with the new operations.

In early October, the US steelmaker announced it had acquired all stock and more than 20 million short tonnes of met coal reserves of privately held Pennsylvania-based Solar Fuel.

The company has paid $24 million of the $36 million price tag to date, and will pay the balance over the next three years.

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