Willow Lake Mine
Willow Lake Mine, an underground operation north of Equality in Saline County in Southern Illinois, first shipped coal in 2002. In 2011, the mine sold 2.2 million tons of coal to Midwest utility customers. The mine has 25 million tons of recoverable coal reserves.
The mine suspended operations effective Nov. 27, 2012, and is transitioning toward permanent closure activities that are expected to be complete by first quarter 2013.
The Willow Lake Preparation Plant is a 1,400 raw-ton-per-hour heavy media plant with the capability to blend or segregate according to coal quality. The plant washes coal for the Willow Lake Mine, the Cottage Grove surface mine and the Wildcat Hills underground mine. Washed coal is primarily shipped by barge down the Ohio River to utility customers.