U.S. Coal Energy - Statistics & Facts

Published by T. Wang, Aug 21, 2019
In 2018, coal was the third most heavily consumed energy source for primary energy in the United States. Texas is one of the largest consumers of coal energy in the country, however, the U.S. has begun to divest away using coal resources due to its environmental impacts. With total consumption of about 12.1 quadrillion British thermal units, the U.S. electric power sector consumed more coal energy than any other sector in 2018. In 2050, U.S. coal power generation is expected to decrease to around 914 terawatt hours.

The popularity of coal as an energy source in the U.S. is largely due to its relatively low cost. In 2018, one metric ton of thermal coal cost about 107 U.S. dollars. The cost of coal depends on the carbon content which can change the energy density that coal contains. Coal consumption is rapidly decreasing in the United States due to increased availability of renewables and natural gas, as well as stronger environmental regulations. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has regulated coal plants due to mercury pollution, smog, and climate change.

Coal plants in the United States have been the focus of recent energy policy under the Trump administration. A large majority of coal plants in the U.S. where regulators set rates have operating expenses that exceed revenue. In these regions, utilities and regulators often force plants to stay open in order to maintain grid stability. Despite this, many utilities are planning to retire coal plants while replacing them with natural gas and renewables.

Interesting statistics

In the following 4 chapters, you will quickly find the 21 most important statistics relating to "Coal Energy".

Coal energy industry in the U.S.

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Important key figures

The most important key figures provide you with a compact summary of the topic of "Coal Energy" and take you straight to the corresponding statistics.

Consumption

Generation

Market

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