May 21, 2008

Peabody Promotes Julian Thornton to Managing Director of Australian Operations

ST. LOUIS, May 21 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Peabody Energy today announced that Julian Thornton has been promoted to Managing Director for Australian Operations. In his new role, Thornton will be responsible for all of Peabody's Australia operations throughout New South Wales and Queensland.

"Australia is the fastest-growing contributor to Peabody's global coal platform," said Peabody Energy Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Eric Ford. "We are pleased to have Julian at the helm as we increase coal production to meet record world coal markets."

Peabody is one of the fastest growing coal companies in Australia. The company's Australian metallurgical and thermal coal production has grown dramatically in recent years and is expected to reach 30 to 35 million tons per year over the next several years as rail and port access improves.

Thornton was most recently Chief Operating Officer for Australia Operations, following his position as Regional Operations Officer for Peabody's New South Wales operations. He has more than 25 years of international engineering and operations management experience, primarily with Anglo Coal. He served as Chief Operating Officer and President and Chief Executive Officer of Anglo subsidiary Carbones del Cerrejon. He was also Senior Vice President for Anglo's South American Operations; served as Vice Chairman and Chief Operating Officer of RPG Industries; and has done consulting work for the mining industry.

Thornton holds a Bachelor of Science degree and Ph.D. in Mining Engineering from the University of Wales. He also has a post-graduate degree in Computer Science from Wits University. He is registered as a Chartered Engineer in the United Kingdom and a Professional Engineer in South Africa.

Peabody Energy is the world's largest private-sector coal company, with 2007 sales of 238 million tons and $4.6 billion in revenues. Its coal products fuel approximately 10 percent of all U.S. electricity generation and 2 percent of worldwide electricity.

    CONTACT:    Beth Sutton    (505) 287-2636  

Peabody Energy

CONTACT: Beth Sutton of Peabody Energy, +1-505-287-2636

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