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Texas Coal Production Falls Sharply - Railroad Commission

Coal News - Published on Wed, 21 Aug 2019

Image Source: Houston Chronicle
Houston Chronicle reported that coal production fell sharply last year as coal-fired power plants closed and natural gas provided a cheaper and cleaner alternative for electricity generators. The state’s 12 active coal mines produced 25 million tons of coal in 2018, down nearly 30 percent from the 35 million tons in 2017, according to the Railroad Commission of Texas. Each of the mines produced significantly less. At the state’s largest coal mine, the Kosse Mine in Limestone County near Waco, production fell 16 percent to 8.7 million tonne from 10.1 million tonne.

The Kosse mine is owned by Luminant, the merchant power unit of the Irving company, Vistra Energy. Luminant, citing economic reasons, shut down three coal plants last year with a combined generating capacity of more than 4,000 megawatts - enough to power more than 800,000 Texas homes on a hot summer day. Another coal-fired plant, the Gibbons Creek Generating Station about 20 miles from Bryan, will close for good in October.

The state also has 17 inactive mines. One of them, a Webb County mine operated by Farco Mining of California was closed by the Railroad Commission earlier this month. It hadn’t produced coal for more than a decade.

Coal is primarily used for power generation and coal plants are closing across the nation, unable to compete with lower-cost natural gas and renewables and under pressure from environmental regulations. Coal is the dirtiest of fossil fuels, producing among the the most greenhouse gases that accelerate climate change.

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Posted By : Sanju Moirangthem on Wed, 21 Aug 2019
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