Coal-fired generation capacity to drop by half in US by 2026

The milestone will lead to significant mine closures, layoffs and falling tax and royalty payments in coal-producing states, according to a report

The US electricity sector is on track to reach a significant milestone: half of the coal-fired generation capacity that peaked in 2011 will have closed by 2026, according to a new report from the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA).

This milestone will be reached earlier than previously projected, despite high gas prices and construction delays caused by the pandemic.

Coal-fired capacity is expected to fall to just 116GW by 2030, down from 318GW in 2011, with more than 80GW of power plants expected to stop using coal between 2023 and the end of 2030.

Presently, fewer than 200 large-scale coal-fired units with a minimum capacity of 50MW are yet to announce their retirement dates, with 118 of these structures being more than four decades old, the IEEFA has said.

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