Peabody

IEEFA Research

As Texas Coal-Fired Power Plants Close, Powder River Basin Mines Are Losing Their Largest Customers

Trends Will Force Closures and Complicate Efforts by Alpha Natural Resources, Arch Coal and Peabody Energy to Work Their Way Out of Bankruptcy

CLEVELAND, Aug. 3, 2016 (IEEFA.org) — The Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis today published a report detailing how Powder River Basin coal producers are losing their largest customers as Texas power producers turn increasingly to other sources of energy. The report, “Texas’ Outsize Role in the Decline of the Powder River Basin Coal […]

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The Federal Government’s Coal-Leasing Program Is Broken: Here’s How to Fix It

Appoint a Price-Setting Commission; Ban Exports; Cancel Some Leases; Eliminate Self-Bonding; Mandate Set-Asides for Mine Clean-up and Miner Pensions; Require Twice-a-Year Audits; Assume Smaller Markets

It’s time for the U.S. to modernize how it manages its publicly owned coal reserves. That’s the essence of comments we’ve filed today with the Department of the Interior as it begins a review of its federal coal-leasing program in the Powder River Basin, a program that has been mismanaged for years at taxpayer expense […]

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Coal Won’t Solve the Energy Poverty Problem

Times Have Changed; Old Electricity-Generation Models Don’t Work Anymore

Coal-fired electricity is no longer the economy builder its proponents say it is. Time was when coal in fact did contribute to growth in many economies, but times have changed. Today governments and private interests worldwide concede—even emphasize—the economic and environmental dysfunction of coal. We’ve just published an IEEFA Briefing Note (“Energy Poverty, Then and […]

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If Peabody Is to Recover, It Must Close More Mines

The World’s Biggest Private-Sector Coal Company’s Current Turnaround Strategy Won’t Work

Peabody Energy, the largest private-sector coal-mining company in the world, is out with a dismal review today of its 2015 performance. The metrics unto themselves are damning, and Peabody’s plan for turning things around is even worse. In a report we’ve just published (with the Seattle-based Sightline Institute)—“Peabody’s Strategies for Survival Ignore Market Realities and Risks […]

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For U.S. Coal, Market Realities Grow Increasingly Harsh

Debt Hurdles, Reclamation and Pension Challenges, Abandonment by Hedge Funds

We distributed a briefing note this week that delves into some of the many pressing difficulties confronting U.S. coal producers. In the note (“Struggling U.S. Coal Companies Face Debt Hurdles, Complications From Reclamation and Pension Obligations, Pressure from Hedge Funds”) we talk about how the cumulative impacts of the industry’s many mounting liabilities—reclamation costs, pension […]

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PEABODY ENERGY: Management Is Rewarded as Investors Lose and Workers Are at Risk

Peabody Energy Management Is Rewarded as Investors Lose and Workers Are at Risk By David Schlissel, Director of Resource Planning Analysis, IEEFA

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2014 – Another Year of Unmet Promises for the Prairie State Energy Campus

2014 – Another Year of Unmet Promises for the Prairie State Energy Campus (pdf) By David Schlissel, Director of Resource Planning Analysis, Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis

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Report: 20 Fourth-Quarter Questions for Powder River Basin Coal Producers

20 Fourth-Quarter Questions for Powder River Basin Coal Producers (pdf) By Tom Sanzillo, Director of Finance, Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis

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Memo: Analysis of Paducah Power System’s Recent and Future Cost of Power from the Prairie State Energy Campus

Memo: Analysis of Paducah Power System’s Recent and Future Costs of Power from the Prairie State Energy Campus By David Schlissel, IEEFA Director of Resource Planning Analysis

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Report: How the High Cost of Power from Prairie State is Affecting Bowling Green Municipal Utilities’ Customers (Update)

  Report: How the High Cost of Power from Prairie State is Affecting Bowling Green Municipal Utilities’ Customers Updated as of October 6, 2014 (pdf) By David A. Schlissel, Director of Resource Planning Analysis  

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More News and Commentary

IEEFA Update: Peabody Investors Are in for a Bumpy Ride

Emerging From Bankruptcy, Coal Companies Are Now Entering a New Cycle of Financial Stress

Investors are in for a bumpy ride as Peabody Energy fashions its reorganization and emerges from bankruptcy. The company’s stock price has been volatile over the past two weeks, capturing the attention of hedge fund investors who have acquired a 5 percent stake in the company.     The stock rose from $1.74 per share […]

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Coal Giant Peabody Energy, in Bankruptcy, Still Finds the Money to Pay Lobbyists

Curtis Tate for McClatchy: Although Peabody Energy, the world’s largest coal producer, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in April, it has still paid its lobbyists $1.2 million this year, according to federal disclosures. Among the company’s lobbyists: several former congressional staffers and three former members of Congress, including onetime House Democratic leader and two-time […]

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Resistance, Still, to Acknowledging Climate Risk Among Major Fossil-Fuel Companies

John H. Cushman Jr. for InsideClimate News: A methodical review of the world’s dominant fossil fuel producers has documented their poor performance—in some cases, egregious failure— in taking responsibility for their emissions of greenhouse gases and moving effectively to confront climate change. “None of them has made a clean break from disinformation on climate science […]

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Mounting Risk (and Opportunity) in Coal Industry Self-Bonding

Gregory DL Morris for Risk & Insurance: Waves of bankruptcies convulsing the coal industry in the United States leave billions of dollars in mine remediation costs potentially unfunded, and raise ominous questions for both tactical insurance and strategic risk management. Dozens of coal companies are in court-supervised reorganization or liquidation, some of them for the […]

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IEEFA Sees Another Round of Bankruptcy in Peabody’s Plan to Emerge From Bankruptcy

‘Overly optimistic’ on Financial Projections, Production Outlook, and Cost-Control Results; Lacking a Sound Assessment of Self-Bonding Costs; Overblown Numbers on Mineable Reserves

CLEVELAND, Sept. 7, 2016 (IEEFA.org) — The Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis today published a memorandum explaining how Peabody Energy’s plan to emerge from bankruptcy will probably result in a second bankruptcy. The memo (“Peabody Energy’s Five-Year Plan to Emerge From Bankruptcy Is Not Credible”), says the company’s reorganization strategy ignores core market […]

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IEEFA Alert: Peabody’s Plan to Emerge From Bankruptcy Is Likely to End in Bankruptcy Again 


Shades Of What Happened to Patriot Coal, a Spinoff That Overstated Minable Reserves and Was Overly Optimistic on the Effects of Its Cost-Cutting Strategies


Peabody Energy’s plan to emerge from bankruptcy will most likely end ironically. In another bankruptcy, that is. We’ve studied the plan and find it lacking in credibility on several points (here’s the underlying research memo we recently put together). The plan is overly optimistic on financial projections in key areas, in its coal-production outlook and […]

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On the Blogs: Peabody’s Incredible Comeback Plan

Dave Roberts for Vox.com: In the context of US capitalism, corporate bankruptcy has become less an admission of failure or a final chapter than a kind of R&R, a chance to shed some flab and come back stronger. As anyone who has followed Donald Trump’s career knows, a big company declaring Chapter 11 bankruptcy is […]

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IEEFA Update: A Snapshot Map of the Global Energy Transition


Momentum in the Face of Resistance by the Forces of the Status Quo

The snapshot map of the world here shows in a handful of new anecdotal markers the global transition to a new electricity-generation economy gaining ground even as status-quo interests dig in, so to speak.   The fight for “self-bonding,” the coal-industry promise to set aside ample funds for cleanup costs, grows weaker with word last week that the […]

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Peabody Shortchanges Colorado County as It Banks Millions for Executive Bonuses

Kevin Simpson for the Denver Post: Routt County Treasurer Brita Horn last week rejected checks for $1.7 million in overdue property taxes from bankrupt coal company Peabody Energy because they fell short of the amount due — and then took money out of her own pocket for a public relations effort assuring taxpayers the company […]

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Regulator Proceeds With Crackdown on Self-Bonding by Collapsing Coal Industry

Heather Richards for the Casper (Wyo.) Star-Tribune: The Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement announced that the agency would begin crafting a self-bonding rule, which will go through multiple comment periods, could potentially change eligibility requirements for the practice, incorporate new bonding mechanisms or institute yearly reviews of the financial health of self-bonded companies. […]

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