The mission of the Eastern Logistics and Planning (Eastern L&P) is to gather information for all parts of the Coal Transportation Infrastructure and to facilitate the resolution of issues and problems within the infrastructure in a beneficial manner. All gatherings and initiatives are undertaken on a voluntary basis with due consideration to avoid all anti-competitive activities. The group is open to all interested parties with a stake in the coal transportation infrastructure and a desire to improve the infrastructure.
Transportation entities such as rail carriers, barge companies, river terminal operators, and export terminal operators are active participants. Coal producers, electric utilities, industrial consumers of coal, and railcar owners are participants who complete the group of necessary parties to continuous improve the coal transportation and delivery system.
The eastern rail carriers graciously provide reports and data on rail performance each meeting. These reports become a basis for discussion and suggestions for group initiatives. There is a subcommittee called the Rapid Response Team that meets by conference call at the direction of the Chairperson (after notable dislocations to the infrastructure such as flooding, major derailments, service interruptions, etc.) to quickly disseminate information and, if required, to recommend action items to the entire group.
Edwin Fisher of Arch Coal is Chairman of the Eastern L&P and of Laurel Klingensmith of FirstEnergy is Vice-Chairman. Patty White of Patriot Coal is the Chairman of the Eastern Rapid Response Team. The following is typical of Action Items for the Committee:
The Eastern Logistics and Planning Committee met October 27, 2011 at the Cambria Suites Pittsburgh at CONSOL Energy Center in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Chairman Jan Figgins (AEP) and Vice Chairman Edwin Fisher (Arch Coal) put together a great program that included: operational updates provided by the CSX and Norfolk Southern Railroads; the challenge for coal of EPA regulations; information on the various methods for dust mitigation, a potential issue for future shipments in the East; increased awareness of CEDAR, an educational program for school age children on the benefits of coal; and an introduction to the Appalachian and Ohio System. Randy Kosky of Zinkan Enterprises kicked off the meeting with a entertaining lesson in Pittsburgh history, landmarks, sports and "Pittsburghese", the language of the locals.
The NCTA and attendees would like to express their thanks to CONSOL Energy for hosting a wonderful networking event at the CONSOL Energy Center where the Pittsburgh Penguins defeated the New York Islanders in the final shootout.