2 coal plants coming to the Powder River Basin

Clean Coal Technologies announces to mining group that it will build

In March, the CEO of New York-based coal research firm Clean Coal Technologies, Inc. said it was “highly likely” that it was coming to Gillette.

On Thursday, the Wyoming Business Report reports, the company announced that it had secured $80 million to build a commercial plant in the Powder River Basin.

CEO Robin Eves made the announcement in Sheridan at the Wyoming Mining Association Convention.

Commission Chairman Rusty Bell said he’s excited to see Clean Coal Technologies come to Campbell County.

“This is something that could really be a game-changer for exporting Powder River Basin coal,” he said.

According to a press release from the company, the plant will have a capacity of two million tons. The company also plans to move its test facility, currently in Tulsa, Oklahoma, up to Wyoming.

The exact locations of the plants have not been announced, but according to the Wyoming Business Report, Clean Coal Technologies is considering three places near Gillette and also plans to build commercial parks in the area as well once the plant is complete.

The design and engineering of the first plant will begin in September or October.

Eves has said his company has developed a way to dry out coal and have it remain stable. The process, which he equates to basically “refining” coal out of the ground, also leaves it dust-free, produces significantly less harmful emissions and is less expensive than untreated coal.

Bell said it’s a method that many have failed at before, but he added that the company’s leaders were aware of that, and they’re confident about their technology.

“They didn’t want to roll out something that wasn’t successful,” Bell said. “They didn’t want to just take the money and run. They wanted to have a product and a technology that was going to work. They’re in it for the long haul.”

If Clean Coal Technologies proves to be successful, the possibilities could be endless.

“If their process can deliver what they say it can deliver — a very stable product with no fear of spontaneous combustion — there are many, many applications for it,” said Jason Begger, executive director for the Wyoming Infrastructure Authority, back in February.

Bell has met with Eves and Aiden Neary, the Chief Operating Officer of the company, a few times, and earlier this year, he gave them a tour of Gillette and Campbell County.

“They just seem like really genuine guys that care more about their product than money,” he said. “In the business world, that’s not always the case.”

“This is a US-designed, engineered and tested technology and we are very pleased to see it deployed here in the US, where we will continue to work with Wyoming on additional agreements and locations,” Neary said in the press release.

Bell said this area makes a lot of sense for Clean Coal Technologies because it already uses Powder River Basin coal at its test facilities. Being located near the source of the coal will save the company time and shipping costs.

And according to the Wyoming Business Report, Eves is excited about what the future holds for coal.

“Coal is alive and well. It really is. Production is up, prices are climbing, demand is up,” he said. “We believe the sustainability of coal, especially here in the United States, is directly tied to technology.”