Where is the coal and the coal jobs?

An interesting post by the eia and the title answers the question: Most U.S. coal is mined in the West, but most coal mining jobs are in the East by Elesia Fasching (11/8/2022).

In 2021, 60% of the country’s coal was produced in the western United States, but only 28% of workers in the coal mining industry worked there, based on data from our Annual Coal Report. This difference is related to the technologies used in the East and West; surface mines in the West can use massive mining equipment to extract large amounts of coal with relatively fewer workers.

Another interesting fact:

In the United States, coal is primarily used for electricity generation. The Clean Air Act of 1970, and subsequent amendments in 1977 and 1990, restricted sulfur emissions from coal-fired power plants. One way for plants to meet the emissions regulations was to burn low-sulfur coal, most of which is found in the West. The resulting growth in demand for low-sulfur coal expanded western coal production, especially in the Powder River Basin.

There is another graph and links to data in the article.

About Thomas J. Pfaff

Thomas J. Pfaff is a Professor of Mathematics at Ithaca College. He created this website because he believes that sustainability, ranging from climate change to social justice, should be included in all courses whenever possible.

Check Also

How much nuclear power does California use?

From the eia article Nuclear power provided about 10% of California’s total electricity supply (9/19/2022) …