Since 2014, a fire has burned in Foresight Energy’s Deer Run coal mine some 60 miles northeast of St. Louis, taking a toll on Foresight’s finances and the vitality of the nearby economy.
The mine fully halted operations in 2015, but the surrounding community still held out hope that it would reopen. That hope ended with the announcement this month that St. Louis-based Foresight plans to permanently close the mine and end its lease for mineral rights in Illinois.
According to it a filing this month with the Securities and Exchange Commission, the loss of mineral reserves, machinery and other assets will cost Foresight between $134 million and $172 million.
For the southern Illinois economy near the mine, Deer Run’s closure means the loss of jobs and ancillary businesses they brought. Local officials fear that economic activity won’t be replaced anytime soon.
Read more: St. Louis Post-Dispatch