Coal Age

JUN 2018

Coal Age Magazine - For more than 100 years, Coal Age has been the magazine that readers can trust for guidance and insight on this important industry.

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May 2016 2 editor's note Playing Energy Favorites T he News section this month kicks off with a couple of positive stories. One discusses the generation mix at one of the larg- est electricity generators and another demonstrates the positive impact exports are having on traditional coal markets. During this recent period of uncertainty, exports have provided a bea- con of hope as international demand for thermal coal grows and prices for metallurgical-grade coal remains very healthy. Foresight Energy, one of the largest Illinois Basin produc- ers, plans to produce more than 21.5 million tons this year and roughly one-third of that production will be exported. Fore- sight President and CEO Rob Moore noted that coal prices have firmed and exports have pulled a lot of volume out of the domestic market. At the end of April, U.S. coal exports stood at 38.2 million tons compared to 29.4 million tons at the same point last year. Last year, the U.S. exported 97 million tons, which was a substantial increase over 60.3 million tons in 2016. Currently, the U.S. is exporting on average 9.6 million tons per month. If exports were to continue at this clip for the entire year, they could approach recent record levels of more than 125 million tons (2012). For the first four months, met ex- ports are up 3.8 million tons and steam exports are up 5 million tons. The additional steam coal is going to countries like India (2.1 million tons), Egypt (1.1 million tons), Korea (989,000 tons), Mexico (583,000 tons) and many more. The second story to note is that American Electric Power (AEP), America's larg- est coal-consuming utility, plans to burn a little more coal this year. The graphic that accompanies the story shows where AEP sits today compared to its past. Today, coal represents 47% of its power generation, which is down from 66% and 70% in 1990 and 2005, respectively. In the future (no date given), the utility hopes to reach a power-generation mix that includes coal at 33%, and they plan to offset that change through efficiency improvements and adding capacity from renewable sources. That may or may not happen depending on public support for renewable energy. Last month, the U.S. secretary of energy was admonished by the mainstream press for picking energy favorites. An internal memo, leaked to Bloomberg News, suggested that the Trump administration planned to use its emergency authority to require grid operators to buy coal-fired power. They see this as another attempt by the administra- tion to keep a campaign promise to coal operators. A group they have forgotten was previously ravaged by eight years of another president picking energy favorites. The difference this time is that Americans are now questioning what the main- stream press tells them. A new poll conducted by the National Mining Association (NMA) found that most Americans (55%) believe the U.S. government should sup- port coal and nuclear power plants, given their ability to provide electricity 24/7, and their utilization of fuel that can be stored on-site in the event of an emergency. Just 20% of voters oppose action to support coal and nuclear. The poll also found that 73% of Americans still believe in an all-of-the-above energy strategy that in- cludes coal, natural gas, nuclear power and renewables. Those who criticize the current administration and argue in favor of a free energy market should do their homework. The energy market has been reshaped by subsidies and other policies designed to work against coal. In 2016, according to the NMA, tax- payers paid $11.4 billion for renewable energy subsidies. Instead of playing favorites with energy, the administration should wean renewable energy from subsidies. Coal Age, Volume 123, Issue 5, (ISSN 1040-7820) is published monthly ex- cept January, June and November, by Mining Media International, Inc., 11655 Central Parkway, Suite 306, Jacksonville, Florida 32224 (mining-media. com). Periodicals postage paid at Jacksonville, FL, and additional mailing offices. Canada Post Publications Mail Agreement No. 41450540. Canada return address: PO Box 2600, Mississauga ON L4T 0A8, Email: subscrip- Current and back issues and additional resources, in- cluding subscription request forms and an editorial calendar, are available online at SUBSCRIPTION RATES: Free and controlled circulation to qualified subscribers. Visit to subscribe. Non-qualified persons may subscribe at the following rates: US domestic addresses a 10 issue subscription, $75.00 USD, All addresses outside the USA a 10 issue subscription $125.00 USD. For subscriber services or to order single copies, contact Coal Age, c/o Stamats Data Management, 615 Fifth Street SE, Cedar Rapids IA 52401, 1-800-553- 8878 ext. 5028 or email ARCHIVES AND MICROFORM: This magazine is available for research and retrieval of selected archived articles from Proquest. For microform avail- ability, contact ProQuest at 800-521-0600 or +1.734.761.4700, or search the Serials in Microform listings at POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Coal Age, 11655 Central Parkway, Suite 306, Jacksonville, FL 32224-2659. REPRINTS: Mining Media International, Inc., 11655 Central Parkway, Suite 306, Jacksonville, FL 32224 USA; phone: +1.904.721.2925, fax: +1.904.721.2930, PHOTOCOPIES: Authorization to photocopy articles for internal corporate, personal, or instructional use may be obtained from the Copyright Clear- ance Center (CCC) at +1.978.750.8400. Obtain further information at COPYRIGHT 2018: Coal Age, incorporating Coal and Coal Mining & Processing. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Steve Fiscor, Publisher & Editor-in-Chief BY STEVE FISCOR PUBLISHER & EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Mining Media International Inc. 11655 Central Parkway, Suite 306 Jacksonville, Florida 32224 USA Phone: +1.904.721.2925 Fax: +1.904.721.2930 Editorial Publisher & Editor-in-Chief—Steve Fiscor, Associate Editor—Jennifer Jensen, Technical Writer—Jesse Morton, Contributing Editor—Russ Carter, Latin American Editor—Oscar Martinez, Graphic Designer—Tad Seabrook, Sales Midwest/Eastern U.S. & Canada, Sales—Victor Matteucci, Western U.S., Canada & Australia—Frank Strazzulla, Scandinavia, UK and European Sales—Colm Barry, Germany, Austria & Switzerland Sales—Gerd Strasmann, Japan Sales—Masao Ishiguro, Production Manager—Dan Fitts,

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