A local mining company says it will idle some of its mines and lay off 225 workers because of softening demand for coal and tightening U.S. Environmental Protection Agency regulations.
PBS Coals Inc., of Somerset, issued a statement this morning announcing the cutbacks, but did not immediately specify which mines will be idled. The company says the production schedules for mines that remain open will be “adjusted to match market demand.”
PBS reported earlier this year that it had roughly 1,000 employees.
Company president and chief executive officer D. Lynn Shanks says “foreign and domestic coal markets remain soft due to weak economic growth and activity.” But Shanks says “escalating costs and uncertainty generated by recently advanced EPA regulations and interpretations have created a challenging business climate for the entire coal industry.”