City of Beckley and Raleigh County Officials move forward to bring a new industry to Southern West Virginia

BECKLEY, WV (WOAY) – This week City of Beckley and Raleigh County officials met to discuss bringing a company to the county that has a different vision on how to utilize coal rather than burning it for energy.

The possibility of engineered coal brings a more efficient, economically friendly product for the coal industry.

“With any industry, you’ve got to start somewhere,” said Raleigh County Commissioner Ron Hedrick. “We’re excited that Raleigh County might be the place for this new industry to start.”

Officials are working with professor and engineers from Mississippi State University and George Washington University to fit a facility within their engineering design in the area.

“This provides us an opportunity to actually utilize coal and coal byproducts in these new forms to make other products,” said New River Gorge Regional Development Authority Deputy Director Jina Belcher.

While a manufactured product is still several years away, the goal is to have the first concept factory on the ground within one year.