PBS Coals Idling 2 Pa. Mines, Laying Off 138

SOMERSET, Pa. (AP) â¿¿ A major southwestern Pennsylvania mining company says it will idle two of its mines and lay off 138 workers.

Thursday's announcement by PBS Coals Inc., of Somerset, comes on the heels of a July announcement that it had laid off 225 workers. Before those layoffs, PBS had reported it had roughly 1,000 employees.

A company official did not immediately return a call for comment on the announcement it is idling the Roytown and Hart mines about 60 miles southeast of Pittsburgh.

But in a news release, the company again blamed softening demand for coal and tightening U.S. Environmental Protection Agency regulations for the layoffs.

Company President and CEO D. Lynn Shanks says "escalating costs and uncertainty generated by recently advanced EPA regulations and interpretations have created a challenging business climate for the entire coal industry."

Copyright 2011 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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