American Resources Corp. (AREC) has entered into a bond purchase agreement with Hilltop Securities, Inc., for the sale of the West Virginia Economic Development Authority (WVEDA) preliminarily approved issuance of, and a volume cap allocation for $45 million of private activity, Solid Waste Disposal Facility Revenue Bonds, Series 2023, for the company’s Wyoming County Coal (WCC) complex, located near the town of Oceana, W. Va., USA.
On May 31, 2023, WCC entered into a Bond Purchase Agreement to sell WVEDA Solid Waste Disposal Facility Revenue Bonds, Series 2023, at the purchase price of $45 million less an underwriting discount of $900,000. The bonds hold an interest rate of 9% and a maturity date of June 8, 2038. The Bond Purchase Agreement is due to close on June 8, 2023, subject to customary closing conditions and document delivery.
“I’ve always said that innovation, not elimination, is key to securing our nation’s energy and national security, and today’s announcement is an example of just the type of innovation that will help ensure the U.S. remains a global energy leader,” said U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV), chairman of the U.S. Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee. “WCC’s new mines and processing expansion will support more than 100 jobs in the region once reopened. This complex will produce and process metallurgical coal [for steel production] alongside the rare earth elements (REE) necessary to build the advanced energy technologies of the future that our country needs. Our country can produce these materials cleaner than anywhere else in the world, and West Virginians are more than up to the job.”
“To have achieved this important milestone for our Wyoming County complex and our ReElement Technologies division is a monumental moment for our company and the industry,” said Kirk Taylor, CFO of AREC. “This funding enables us to efficiently modernize and transform the complex to be the first in the industry to process for both carbon and rare earth / critical battery mineral concentrates. The planned transformation will expand the footprint of the complex to incorporate higher efficiency carbon processing and logistics infrastructure, while also broadening its resource potential to capture and process critical and rare earth elements. These improvements, which use our innovative suite of intellectual property, will allow us to produce the raw materials needed to support modern infrastructure and the growth of electrification and clean technologies in the most environmentally safe ways.”
The WCC complex is strategically located within one of the last substantial mid-volatile metallurgical carbon deposits and, with direct rail access, provides favorable transportation logistics to U.S. ports. Additionally, WCC is surrounded by a number of high-value metallurgical carbon reserves and mining sites that would otherwise be considered “stranded” without access to the WCC processing and logistics complex.
The company’s focus will initially be to bring two new underground mines into production which will produce an estimated 55,000 tons of carbon per month, with further expansion potential as the mines are developed. AREC will also look to upgrade and expand WCC’s carbon processing plant’s capacity from its current 350 tons per hour (tph), to approximately 700 tph, while also incorporating the company’s innovative “capture” and “process” technology which will enable the facility to capture and process critical and REE from new carbon production and carbon-based waste sources to produce rare earth and critical element concentrates. The REE and CE concentrates produced will be transported to the company’s ReElement Technologies refining facility in Indiana for further separation and purification into forms needed for the manufacturing of modern goods and technologies.