Houston — Coal exports through Ridley Terminals in Prince Rupert, British Columbia, totaled 690,781 mt in May, up 8.5% from April and 51.5% higher than shipments in the same month a year ago, according to figures released by the Prince Rupert Port Authority.
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The total, which combines metallurgical and thermal coal, was the highest since September, as demand for both met and thermal coal from North America picked up on higher seaborne pricing.
Met coal exports from the terminal totaled 542,235 mt in May, up 14% compared with April and 48.5% above shipments in the same month last year.
In the first five months of 2018, met coal exports totaled 2.39 million mt, up 56.1% from the same period a year ago.
Thermal coal exports in May totaled 148,546 mt, down 7.9% from the prior month, but up 63.7% compared with the year-ago month. For the January through May period, thermal coal exports totaled 643,103 mt, down 22% from the same period last year.
The terminal, the closest major North American coal export terminal to Asia, is served by Canadian National's railroad network. The largest customer is Conuma Coal Resources, a met coal producer in British Columbia.