The U.S. Department of Labor announced a new program designed to encourage American miners to get COVID-19 vaccinations. Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) will pilot the Mine Vaccine Outreach Program to deliver free vaccinations in mining communities and provide educational outreach to mining communities in Kentucky and Arizona on the safety and efficacy of COVID-19 vaccines. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that vaccination rates are below 60% in two states where a substantial number of mining operations exist.

Participation in MSHA’s Mine Vaccine Outreach Program is voluntary and free for mine operators in Kentucky and Arizona. Program representatives will collaborate with the states’ mine operators to identify convenient locations, coordinate with health professionals to administer vaccine services, and develop communication programs to address the community’s questions and concerns.

MSHA has selected Jazz Solutions Inc., an Ashburn, Virginia, IT solutions provider for federal, state and local governments, to administer the program.

For 2021, output touched a record 4.07 billion mt, up 4.7% on the previous year.

Since October, authorities have ordered coal miners to run at maximum capacity.

Coal inventory at Chinese utilities exceeded 162 million mt on January 21, or 21 days usage, about 40 million mt higher than the same period last year, the state planner National Development and Reform Commission said.

Meanwhile, China’s 2021 power consumption rose 10.3% year-on-year to 8.31 trillion kilowatt hours (kWh), the National Energy Administration said.