Alpha Natural Resources, Inc. (Alpha), is a supplier and exporter of metallurgical coals for use in the steel-making process and a supplier of thermal coal to electric utilities and manufacturing industries, as well as a exporter of thermal coal. As of December 31, 2013, the Company operated 81 mines and 25 coal preparation plants in Northern and Central Appalachia and the Powder River Basin. The Company operates in two segments: Eastern Coal Operations and Western coals Operations. Eastern Coal Operations consists of the mines in Northern and Central Appalachia, the Company's coal brokerage activities and its road construction business. Western Coal Operations consists of two Powder River Basin mines in Wyoming. The Company uses five different mining techniques to extract coal from the ground, which include longwall mining, room-and-pillar mining, truck-and-shovel mining, truck and front-end loader mining and highwall mining.