CASPER, Wyo. (Casper (Wyo.) Star-Tribune) — Layoffs are occurring as the struggling western U.S. coal industry contends with diminished electricity use during the coronavirus pandemic.

Navajo Transitional Energy Company says 73 workers at the Spring Creek mine in southeastern Montana and 57 at the Antelope mine in northeastern Wyoming are losing their jobs.

NTEC cited economic conditions and declining coal demand in announcing the cuts Thursday.

The Navajo Nation company acquired the mines after the bankruptcy of Gillette-based Cloud Peak Energy in 2019.

Wright Mayor Ralph Kingan tells the Casper Star-Tribune layoffs also are happening at Peabody Energy's North Antelope Rochelle mine.

St. Louis-based Peabody declined to comment.

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