Feb 26 Coal managed to retain its top spot in U.S. power generation in 2015, while natural gas came in a close second, according to the latest data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration on Friday.
EIA said gas produced a record high 1.3 billion megawatt hours per day of electricity on average in 2015. Coal, meanwhile, produced about 1.4 billion MWh per day. One megawatt is enough to power about 1,000 U.S. homes.
Although data from EIA showed that power plants used more gas than coal to produce electricity in seven of the 12 months in 2015, including every month between July and December, coal maintained its lead due to high usage during the polar vortex winter.
Many of the coal units that operated during the winter of 2015 however, have since retired.
In 2015, power companies shut over 15,000 MW of coal plants, the most ever in any year, as inexpensive gas reduced what generators could charge for electricity, making it uneconomic for them to upgrade coal plants to meet increasingly strict federal environmental rules.
Read More: http://www.reuters.com/