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Ridley Terminals in Prince Rupert, British Columbia, exported over 1.1 million mt of thermal and metallurgical coal in March, up 42.8% from the previous month, Prince Rupert Port Authority data showed Tuesday.Receive daily email alerts, subscriber notes & personalize your experience.

Combined met and thermal exports were at their highest since March 2013 with 1.9 million mt.

The jump was largely driven by a peak in monthly thermal exports. Thermal shipments totaled 537,493 mt, the highest S&P Global Platts has recorded since it began collecting the data in 2012.

Met coal shipments also reached a high, totaling 602,838 mt in March, the highest level since September 2019.

From the year-ago month, total coal exports rose 16.1%, and compared with the first three months of 2019, January-March exports were up 23.1%.

From February, thermal exports jumped 61.9% and from the year-ago month they were up 56.7%. Met coal exports rose 29.1% month on month in March, but declined 5.7% year on year.

While thermal exports were up 45.4% over three months compared with the year-ago period, met exports dropped 1.3%.

Petcoke March exports totaled 31, 325 mt, down 79.1% from February and down 71.5% from the year-ago month. Compared with the first three months of 2019, petcoke exports in the corresponding period this year were down 12.9%.

US Senator Dan Sullivan, Republican-Alaska, argues another factor is basically kicking the sector while it’s down.

Sullivan says some of the largest US banks are no longer willing to lend the sector money — not because of these economic concerns — but because of their environmental impact. He and 15 other US senators asked the White House to investigate this practice, which they argue is unfair because the banks are benefiting right now from Congress’ coronavirus relief packages.

We also asked Sullivan if Arctic oil is still needed, how Alaskan operations are faring, and his campaign to increase US pressure on the Saudis for the recent oil price war.