Bowie Announces Further Layoffs At Coal Mine Near Paonia

Sep 29, 2015

A coal mine near Paonia is laying off more workers.

Bowie Resource Partners announced on Tuesday that it's eliminating nearly 100 jobs at the Bowie #2 Mine.

In a release, the company said it's letting 78 full-time employees and 19 contractors go.  

Credit NPS

Bowie says its scaling back production at the mine as a resulting of idling its longwall while it develops a new longwall panel. 

"When a company is developing a new long wall panel, it generally means that it is moving into a new section of the mine," said Stuart Sanderson, president of the Colorado Mining Association.  "It does take some time to move a longwall mining machine into that area."

Bowie said it expects a new longwall panel to be developed in 12 months.

The company also said it will continue to evaluate the market for coal produced at the mine.

Sanderson said the coal industry is facing some serious challenges.

"We have been saddled as an industry by regulations seeking to shift energy production away from coal," he said.

Last year, Bowie laid off 150 people at the same mine outside of Paonia.

Before this announcement of layoffs, Delta County said the area has lost 500 coal-mining jobs in the past two years. 

In 2014, 300 people were laid off when a coal mine in Somerset closed.