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Usibelli ships coal to Chilean power plant


Last updated 9/24/2006 at Noon

The Usibelli Coal Mine in Healy, Alaska, is shipping coal to a power plant in Mejillones, Chile. The panamax vessel MV Coral Sapphire departed Seward Aug. 18 loaded with 73,000 metric tons of Alaska coal. There is an option for the customer to order a second shipment of the same size during the last quarter of 2006.

Since 1985, Usibelli has exported more than 13 million tons of coal to several Pacific Rim customers - primarily South Korea. Test shipments to Chile began in 2004 and since then Usibelli has exported more than 250,000 metric tons to three utilities that operate power plants along the South American country's west coast. "Chile's demand for coal is expected to increase significantly in the near future and we look forward to being a long-term reliable fuel supplier to meet their growing energy needs," said Usibelli President Joe Usibelli Jr.

Usibelli mines approximately 1.4 million tons of coal annually. Around 900,000 tons provides fuel for the generation of power and heat throughout Interior Alaska. The remainder is exported to South Korea and Chile via rail to Seward, where it is loaded into ocean-going vessels.


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