NARM Haul Truck

Coal is loaded into a haul truck at Peabody Energy's North Antelope Rochelle Mine (NARM).

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) filed an administrative complaint today, Feb. 26 challenging a proposed joint venture between Peabody Energy Corporation and Arch Coal. The transaction would combine their coal mining operations in the Southern Powder River Basin, located in northeastern Wyoming.

The Peabody-Arch amalgamation includes seven of the companies’ mines, including Peabody’s North Antelope Rochelle Mine (NARM), in Converse and Campbell Counties, and Arch’s Black Thunder Mine near Wright. Additional assets include the Caballo, Rawhide and Coal Creek mines in Wyoming along with the West Elk and Twentymile mines in Colorado.

The FTC’s complaint alleges the transaction will eliminate competition between Peabody and Arch Coal, which are the two major competitors in the market for thermal coal in the Southern Powder River Basin (SPRB) and the two largest coal-mining companies in the United States.

Arch and Peabody responded to the announcement by stating they continue to pursue pursuit of their joint venture, one which will create value for their customers and shareholders.

“We view the need for this combination as self-evident. The proposed joint venture promises to enhance the cost-competitiveness of our thermal operations, enable us to serve the evolving needs of domestic power generators well into the future, and protect the value of our thermal assets for our shareholders. In short, it will create a stable, durable supply platform for our thermal customers even as we continue our organizational pivot towards global metallurgical markets,” Arch Coal Chief Executive Officer John W. Eaves said

Read full coverage of this story in the March 4 edition of the Douglas-Budget.

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