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Exporting U.S. Coal to China

While there is much to celebrate about stopping many proposed new coal power plants in the US and still much to be done about aggressively phasing out existing ones, efforts to export our coal to China are just beginning. Take the town of Bellingham, WA, which has won all sorts of well-deserved awards as a green city. Over the city’s objections, Carrix seeks to construct Gateway Pacific Terminal, a coal-exporting port. Goldman Sachs is an investor, Warren Buffet’s Burlington Northern rail will ship the coal to Carrix’s port, with Peabody Energy inking a deal to ship 24 million metric tons annually from the new port. Permitting approval is pending with Washington State’s Whatcom County, the State of Washington Department of Ecology, and with the US Army Corps of Engineers. A second, separate proposal has Arch Coal teaming up with Australia’s Ambre Industries to build a coal exporting terminal in Longview, Washington. Cowlitz County is in the process of approving that permit.