US coal production ‘to fall 7% in 2019’

The US Energy Information Administration (EIA) expects to see the lowest production since 1978

The Big Zero report

Coal power

The US is predicted to produce 694.9 million tonnes of coal in 2019, a 7% fall from 753.7 million tonnes in 2018.

The nation’s Energy Information Administration (EIA) has cut its previous production estimate by 3.8%, bringing it down to what would be the lowest production since 1978, a year in which only 670.16 million tonnes were made.

It believes 2020 production will drop even lower, to a total of 663.7 million tonnes.

This downward trend is matched by a lower estimated share of generation – coal is expected to make up just a quarter of US power in 2019 and 23.4% in 2020, down from 27.4% from coal in 2018.

Much of the fall in the expected use of coal is due to cheaper gas prices and a boost in dry gas production.

Power generation from natural gas is estimated to total 36.5% in 2019 and 37.2% in 2020, up from 35.1% last year.

Michael Bloomberg, the world’s 11th richest man, has announced new plans to retire every single coal-fired power plant in the US over the next 11 years.

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