Here we go again; or maybe not? The latest round of bankruptcies and closures came as a shock to many of the miners in the industry. At the beginning of July, Blackjewel Mine abruptly closed two of its operations in Wyoming, immediately displacing 600 workers and filed for emergency bankruptcy. Although some are saying that the mines closed due to poor management, it still has a devastating effect on the industry psyche.
U.S. coal mines were making a resurgence from the pre-2015 coal downturn, fueling feelings of optimism and hope. As a recruiter specializing in the mining industry, I witnessed first-hand, and with a heavy heart, the devastation of the last downturn and the mass exodus of coal miners from the industry. That incredible talent left the mining industry to pursue new careers, with no intention of returning.
The coal industry produces more than just energy
Coal is vital to our world. I personally do not see coal permanently going away, despite the talk. Natural gas has pushed coal out of the power plant business, but they too have their issues. Solar and wind power (green energies) take up too much valuable real estate; both of these are also scrutinized for harming the environment. Nuclear energy, also touted as green energy, has already proven just how much more devastating it can be to the environment; much more so than coal.
The good news is that data predicts global coal will continue to grow into 2022, even though the major players are scaling down. The coal industry shows just how resilient the people of mining are. The Mining team here at JSG is looking for mining professionals. If you are one of these displaced workers or just looking to further your career, contact us! We have dozens of job opportunities in the mining & heavy industrial industry.