The Alabama Coal Association says 11 million tons of mined met coal was exported last year.
That adds up to $2 billion worth of metallurgical coal – which is used in steel production – being shipped out through the Port of Mobile.
ACA President Patrick Cagle said in a statement that the mineral is “quietly helping fuel our state’s economic engine.”
“The industry’s impact is irreplaceable, from the thousands of high-paying jobs at underground met coal mines in the Tuscaloosa and Jefferson County area to generating almost half the revenue at Alabama’s Port,” Cagle said.
Met coal exports made up 70 percent of the state’s coal production. Steam coal, which is used for power and heat production, made up 30 percent.
The McDuffie Coal Terminal generates about 50 percent of the total annual revenue for the Alabama State Port Authority.
Mobile’s port ranked No. 9 in the U.S. in a 2016 statistic based on tonnage handled through its facility. It is angling for a nearly $400 million expansion project to accommodate bigger and larger container ships. Improvements to the port, which are included in Gov. Kay Ivey’s “Rebuild Alabama” infrastructure plan, are the only non-road and bridge plans that would be financed through a 10-cent increase in the state’s gasoline tax.
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- On March 14, 2019