BLM's coal lease sale attracts one bid: 21 cents/ton

Sep 18, 2013

The Bureau of Land Management’s coal lease sale today coal lease sale received one bid. The Buckskin Mine Hay Creek II tract is adjacent to the operating Buckskin Mine in Campbell County. The bid came from Buckskin Mine’s operator, Kiewit Mining Properties, and amounted to 21 cents/ton for the estimated 167 million tons of mineable coal in the tract. If accepted, the tract could extend the mine’s life by about eight years.

But the bid is the lowest Wyoming’s BLM has received since 2001. BLM spokeswoman, Beverly Gorny, says the quality of the coal likely influenced how the company calculated what it thought was the fair market value for the coal.

“The average quality of the coal coming out of this portion of the Powder River Basin is under 8300 BTUs. And this quality average places the coal reserves near the lower end of the range of coal quality currently being mines of the Wyoming portion of the Powder River Basin,” says Gorny.  

Last year, the Buckskin mine laid off workers.

BLM’s previous coal lease sale received zero bids. The agency should decide in the next couple of days whether they will accept Kiewit’s bid.