Arch Coal bankruptcy turns the tide towards a clean energy future

Arch Coal bankruptcy turns the tide towards a clean energy future

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Arch Coal, Inc., the second largest coal producer in the U.S., today filed for bankruptcy. The company said it reached an agreement with its lenders to cover over $4.5 billion of debt. The significant decline in the domestic coal market has resulted in a precipitous drop in Arch Coal’s stock price from over $360 per share in 2011 to less than $1 in 2015. Today’s bankruptcy filing follows a recent trend in the coal industry, with some of the largest domestic coal producers, including Alpha Natural Resources, Patriot Coal Corporation and Walter Energy, Inc. all filing for bankruptcy protection in 2015.

Friends of the Earth Climate Campaigner Marissa Knodel issued the following response: 

Arch Coal’s bankruptcy is the latest blow to an industry struggling to stay afloat as the energy tide turns towards a cleaner energy future. Our country and the world cannot continue to dig up and burn coal if we are to confront the threats posed by climate change. The only safe place for coal is to leave it in the ground.

Today’s announcement demonstrates that investing in expanding coal mines like Otter Creek and West Elk and building infrastructure like the Tongue River Railroad and Millennium Bulk export terminal aren’t worth the environmental, social or economic costs. As we move toward to a clean energy economy, we must ensure that coal workers and their families are provided with the resources and training to allow a just transition. We must also ensure companies like Arch Coal are held responsible for the destruction they have wreaked, so that taxpayers aren’t left paying the bills for restoring our scarred and polluted lands and waters.     


Expert contact: Marissa Knodel, (202) 222-0729, [email protected]

Communications contact: Kate Colwell, (202) 222-0744, [email protected]

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