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By Betsy Monseu, CEO
American Coal Council
There is no question that the future is brighter for our nation’s coal industry.
Changes in policy, regulations, and markets are contributing to a stronger domestic coal industry. The U.S. economy is growing again. Global economic activity is increasing. The business prospects of other countries that use our coal for electricity, steel-making, and other industrial purposes are better. U.S. coal exports are up a whopping 70 percent year-to-date through September 2017.
By Roger Bezdek, for the U.S. Department of Energy
(WASHINGTON) – The U.S. coal industry is distressed, and the fate of U.S. coal mining regions and jobs figured prominently in the 2016 Presidential election. EIA forecasts that coal will continue to decrease as a source of U.S. electricity production through 2050. The economic and societal costs of coal mine closures are large, and the decline of the coal industry has taken a heavy toll. For example, the increased poverty associated with coal job losses is startling, and in some eastern Kentucky counties poverty rates exceed 30% and child poverty rates approach 50%.
WASHINGTON, DC, October 9, 2017– The American Coal Council welcomes the announcement by EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt that he plans to sign a proposed rule on Tuesday “to withdraw the so-called Clean Power Plan” previously issued under the Obama administration. Pruitt made the announcement today while visiting coal country in Hazard, Kentucky. He also once again took the opportunity to declare an end to the war on coal.
HOUSTON — Coal exports from terminals in Virginia’s Hampton Roads region totaled 2.77 million st in July, up 3.4% from the prior month and up 61.7% from the year-ago month, according to the Virginia Maritime Association.
Exports rose as both low volatility hard coking coal and European-delivered thermal coal prices ticked up compared with June levels.
S&P Global Platts assessments of HCC metallurgical coal averaged $156/mt FOB US East Coast in July, up from $144.93/mt the prior month, and Platts assessments of CIF ARA delivered thermal coal averaged $83.49/mt, up from $79.48/mt in June.
NEW YORK — A group representing power generators across the European Union warned that the bloc’s plans to limit the use of coal may backfire, encouraging utilities to seek returns on new fossil-fuel plants instead of putting money into clean energy.
European Commission is considering a law that would effectively block many coal-fired plants from getting support payments under the region’s capacity market, which is intended to ensure steady supplies of electricity when the wind isn’t blowing and the sun isn’t shining.
BEIJING — Coal prices in China may continue to rise during the upcoming heating season, despite the endeavors of regulators to stabilize them, due to strong demand and overcapacity reduction, experts said.
“From now on to the end of the heating season next spring, coal prices will not show a downturn trend, with demand rising continually, if there are no strong measures from regulators to guarantee supply,” said Zhang Likuan, senior analyst at the China Coal Data Exchange Center.
By Jamison Cocklin
WASHINGTON, DC — Retail electricity rates for U.S. residential customers averaged 12.8 cents/kWh during the first half of this year, or about 3% more than the same period in 2016, an increase that was driven by higher fuel costs for commodities like natural gas, according to the Energy Information Administration (EIA).
The cost of natural gas delivered to U.S. electric generators during the first six months of the year was 37% higher than it was during the same time in 2016, averaging $3.53/MMBtu, EIA said in a note on Monday. While the delivered cost of coal was down about 2% during the same time, residential rates were also influenced by power utilities recovering expenditures on transmission and distribution infrastructure.
Energy Business Review
By Tim Pierce
WASHINGTON, DC — Ukraine received its first shipment of anthracite coal from the U.S. Wednesday, part of an $80 billion deal between President Donald Trump and Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko.
This shipment carried 62,000 tons of the total 700,000 tons set to be delivered to Ukraine by the end of the year, the Financial Times reports.
“As agreed with President Trump, first American coal has reached Ukraine. It is a significant contribution to our energy security and a vivid proof of mutually beneficial strategic cooperation between our two nations,” Poroshenko wrote in a Facebook post. “While it continues to steal Ukrainian coal from Ukrainian Donbas, Russia has lost yet another tool for its energy blackmailing.”
New York (September 19, 2017) – President Trump has announced his picks to fill out the Tennessee Valley Authority board of directors. The slate includes a coal executive and a leader at Oak Ridge National Lab.
The one nominee from Tennessee is Jeff Smith, who gets praise from both of the state’s senators. Smith was deputy director of operations at Oak Ridge. Republicans Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker say they still need to get to know the other nominees.