In August 2016, ECP invested in the convertible preferred equity security of Ramaco Development, LLC, an operator and developer of high-quality, low-cost metallurgical coal. On February 2, 2017, Ramaco Development, LLC reorganized as Ramaco Resources, Inc. and priced an Initial Public Offering on the NASDAQ under the ticker symbol “METC.”
Ramaco owns a near-term development portfolio of four long-lived projects in central and southern West Virginia, southwestern Virginia, and southwestern Pennsylvania. The company achieved initial commercial production in the first quarter of 2017.
Metallurgical coal is utilized in the process of creating coke, which in turn is used to produce steel. Unlike thermal coal, metallurgical coal is not burned for the production of electricity and as such, is not impacted by carbon, mercury and other power plant environmental emission regulations, nor does it generate CO2 emissions in the baking process. Further, it is not directly impacted by natural gas or power prices and is instead tied to the U.S. and global market for steel production.