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Listen: Newly optimistic US coal industry focuses on flexibility, federal regulations

The Eastern Fuel Buyers Conference draws coal players from all basins and different market segments, and the mood had lifted this year as the industry welcomes an uptick in demand and new administration in the White House. Coal Trader editors Jeff McDonald and Jim Levesque both attended the conference, and they share some of the strategies companies are employing to survive as they climb out of the downturn. Metallurgical coal markets, higher natural gas prices and changes at the US Environmental Protection Agency are all playing into the industry's renewed optimism.

Related news stories from the conference:
Wind, nuclear subsidies play large role in reduced coal consumption: Dynegy VP
CSX's new emphasis on 'precision railroading' could limit coal service
Export met coal prices fall, but remain attractive for US producers

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