Why 2015 will go down as a year to forget for North American coal miners – by Peter Koven (National Post – November 21, 2015)

The National Post is Canada’s second largest national paper.

Plenty of coal industry insiders have spoken out about the collapse of the business in the United States. But nobody does it with quite the same fervor as Robert Murray.

“We have the worst president the United States has ever had in its history,” said the founder and chief executive of Ohio-based Murray Energy Corp., one of the largest coal producers in the U.S.

“He has stacked the government with hundreds of thousands of bureaucrats who are on a regulatory rampage (against coal) that are carrying out the desires of those who got him elected,” Murray said in an interview.

Murray, 75, doesn’t put all the blame on the Obama administration. He acknowledges that dirt-cheap natural gas and a steady decline in U.S. manufacturing have also gutted the coal industry. But he claims to be astounded by regulatory hurdles that are being thrown up against his business on a regular basis. He is fighting them in court.

“Daily, we can’t read this stuff as fast as they’re putting it out to eliminate coal use,” said Murray, who maintained he is not ultra-conservative. He simply thinks government policies are wrecking the industry.

Many will argue that Murray, who has made his views very public, is off base. But when he talks about the “absolute destruction” of the U.S. coal industry, it’s no exaggeration.

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