Southwest Virginia mines affected by Alpha layoffs

APPALACHIA, Va. (WYMT/WJHL) - Bristol-based Alpha Natural Resouces is cutting 1,200 jobs and closing eight mines impacting jobs in Southwest Virginia.

400 jobs were cut Tuesday in Virginia, West Virginia and Pennsylvania.

Some of them were in Buchanan and Wise counties, where several mines were affected.

Our sister station WJHL talked to Appalachia town manager, Fred Lutnsford, who tells us the layoffs are a devastating blow.

Alpha said it's shifting its focus from thermal coal, used in domestic power generation, to metallurgical coal used in steel making.

Alpha's CEO Kevin Crutchfield also cites what he calls "a regulatory environment that's aggressively aimed at constraining the use of coal."

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