Coal companies are optimistic about the future of the industry.
Coal has fueled West Virginia's economy for decades, but the industry was hit hard in recent years. This caused mines to close, driving people out of the state to look for other jobs.
Justin Hamm is the President of Belt Tech, Inc, a mining company based in Bluefield. He said his company had to think about moving away from coal and tap into other industries just to keep the business running.
"We had to look at diversifying and we are still looking at diversifying as far as terms of market and products and line of service," Hamm said.
Mining companies believe the industry is turning around. General Manager for Applied Industrial Technologies, Danny Beavers, said this turnaround happened after the presidential election.
"The day after the election, our phones started ringing a whole lot more from a lot of the mining industry that we haven't seen for a year and a half so we have seen our business coming back with the coal industry rebounding," Beavers explained.
Product Manager for Strata Worldwide, Chris Adkins, said he remains optimistic about the future of the coal mining industry.
"We got a lot of operations going back online, the phones are ringing a lot more these days and things are looking up," Adkins said.
Coal shows like the 22nd Biennial Bluefield Coal Show are also beneficial for mining companies. The show helps companies grow and learn about new mining opportunities.