May 9, 2022 - West Virginia coal production increased week over week by +10.1%. Production increased by +9.1% in the NAPP region of the state and +11.5% in the state’s CAPP region. Compared to the same 18 weeks of 2021, year to date statewide coal production is up +5.7%. +6.3% in the state’s NAPP region and +4.9% in the CAPP region of the state.
National coal production also increased from the previous week by +9%. +9.6% in the Appalachian coal basin, +13.1% in the Interior coal region and +7.6% in the Western coal region. Compared to the same 18 weeks of 2021, U.S. coal production is up +3.8%. +4.2 in the Appalachian region, -2.3% in the Interior coal region and +4.8% in the Western coal region.
EIA reported spot prices for domestic thermal coal increased across all the regions except for the Powder River Basin. Central Appalachian thermal coal pricing increased +1.9% (+$2.25 / ton ), Northern Appalachian +1.2% (+$1.15 / ton), Illinois Basin +1.1% (+$1.35 / ton), Western Bituminous +2.3% (+$0.85 / ton). Powder River Basin coal prices declined week over week by -1% (-$0.15 / ton). Average U.S. natural gas prices increased from the previous week by +1.5% (+$0.11). Compared to the same week in 2021, Central Appalachian thermal prices are up +99.8%, Northern Appalachian +84.6%, Illinois Basin +244.9%, Powder River Basin +25.5% and Western Bituminous prices are up +23%. Average natural gas prices are +144.6% higher than the same week last year.
According to data reported by West Virginia’s two class one railroad systems, the number of unit coal trains in the entire Northern Appalachian and Central Appalachian regions holding per day increased week over week by +25.6% (+1.9 trains per day). Coal carloads on both systems increased +12.5% week over week.
U.S. iron and steel production decreased from the previous week by -0.5% and furnace capacity utilization increased by +1.2%. Compared to the same 18 weeks of 2021, year to date U.S. steel production is off -1.6% from last year. Cumulative furnace capacity utilization is up +2.5% from the same time last year.
U.S. electric generation decreased week over week by -1.4%. Output in the New England, Mid-Atlantic and Southeast regions decreased -2.8% and output in the Central Industrial region decreased -3.3% week over week. Compared to the same time 18 weeks of 2021, year to date U.S. electric generation is up +3.1%. Generation in the New England, Mid-Atlantic and Southeast regions is up +1.5% and output in the Central Industrial region is up +2.8%.
Total U.S. rail traffic increased week over week by +1.7%. Coal carloads increased +9.5%, steelmaking traffic increased by +0.5% and automaking carloads increased by +4.3%. Compared to the same time last year, total rail traffic is off -3.4%. Coal carloads are up +7.3%, finished steel and steel making traffic is off -4.9% and automaking carloads are down by -6.4% from last year.