Coal to remain power industry influence despite cheap natural gas

07 March 2013 21:00  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--Coal will continue as the leading power industry influence through 2020 despite competition from cheaper natural gas, an industry executive said on Thursday.

Lower natural gas prices and environmental regulations will have the greatest influence on coal’s future market share, said Deck Slone, US coal producer Arch Coal’s senior vice president of strategy and public affairs.

However, Slone said coal is still expected to grow at a rate of 1% per year through 2020 even as natural gas from US shale resources becomes more abundant.

In 2008, 100m tons of coal was displaced by natural gas, but by 2013, US coal will begin to take back some market share as gas prices correct over time, and US demand and exports remain healthy, explained Slone during IHS CERAWeek.  

“Planned US expansions will support a more than doubling of coal exports over the next several years,” he said.

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By: Anna Matherne

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