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A coal mine once owned by the embattled Murray Energy and its controversial founder Robert Murray will cease operations this summer.
The mine’s new owner announced the June 15 closure in a notice sent to the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services last week. All 106 workers will be laid off, the notice says.
The affected employees are not unionized and will not be offered bumping rights, the notice reads.
Before filing for bankruptcy in 2019, the St. Clairsville-based Murray Energy was one of the nation’s largest coal companies. It owned the Crandall Canyon Mine in Utah, which collapsed in 2007, killing six miners and three rescue workers.
Investigators documented lax safety practices by Murray Energy and lax oversight by the Mine Safety and Health Administration, which is a branch of the U.S. Department of Labor.
The company was assessed nearly $4 million in fines.
Robert Murray was a prominent climate change denier, and his company funded several organizations that cast doubt on the scientific consensus that carbon emissions are causing the planet to grow warmer.
The coal company owner was a vocal supporter of former President Donald Trump and vociferously opposed any regulation designed to address climate change.
He died in 2020 days after retiring.
Murray Energy was also accused of covering up its role in Ohio’s House Bill 6 bribery scandal.
The coal company suffered financially as the nation’s power grid transitions away from coal. After filing for bankruptcy protection to restructure $2.7 billion in debt, the company sold nearly all of its assets, including the Century Mine, to its creditors, American Consolidated Natural Resources Inc., which is now headquartered in St. Clairsville.