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Will high natural gas prices increase coal use?

As the price of natural gas rises, coal consumption will increase both domestically and internationally to meet rising electricity demand during the next several decades, according to data from the US Energy Information Administration.

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    Processed coal streams out into a pile after being cleaned in the prep plant at the Century Mine near Beallsville, Ohio. The US Energy Information Administration predicts that coal generation will gain in 2013 due to the rising price of natural gas.
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In an article from yesterday’s Power Magazine, the magazine states that the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) predicts that coal generation will gain in 2013 due to the rising price of natural gas.

According to the article: “The increasing cost of natural gas relative to coal is expected to increase coal’s share of total generation from 37.4% in 2012 to 39.9% in 2013, according to the EIA April release of its Short-Term Energy Outlook.

Though that would leave coal’s percentage below its 42.3% share in 2011, it indicates that gas may not be on an inevitable path to overtake a significantly greater share of the generation pie.”

Just today, a dedication ceremony was held for the John W. Turk Plant in Arkansas. The 600-megawatt coal-fueled plant began commercial operations in December 2012 and is one of the cleanest, most efficient coal-fueled plants in the United States, and the first of its kind in operation in the United States.

EIA figures also show that coal consumption will increase both domestically and internationally to meet rising electricity demand during the next several decades, providing the U.S. and other countries with indigenous energy resources.

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