November 18, 2022 - West Virginia coal production declined slightly week over week by -0.56%. Production from the Northern Appalachian region of the state was unchanged from the previous week, while production from the state’s Central Appalachian region decreased -1.2%. Compared to the same 46 weeks of 2021, year to date statewide coal production is up +6%. +4.9% from the state’s Northern Appalachian region and +7.5% from the Central Appalachian region of the state.
U.S. coal production also declined from the previous week by -1.2%. -0.6% from the Appalachian coal region, -1.7% from the Interior region and -1.3% from the Western coal region, Year to date U.S. coal production is up +4.1% compared to the same 46 weeks of 2021. +1.9% in the Appalachian region, +2.6% in the Interior region and +5.5% in the Western coal region.
EIA reported spot prices for domestic thermal coal were unchanged from the previous week. Compared to the same week last year, Central Appalachian pricing is +102% higher, Northern Appalachian, +158%, Illinois Basin, +329.7%, Powder River Basin -44.1% and Western Bituminous, +26%. Average U.S. natural gas prices increased week over week by +7.8%. Compared to the same week last year, average natural gas prices are up +7.6%.
According to data reported by West Virginia’s two class one railroads systems to the federal Surface Transportation Board, the average number of unit coal trains holding in the entire Northern and Central Appalachian coal regions decreased from the previous week by -12.3%. Coal carloadings increased week over week by +0.3%.
River barge loadings of West Virginia coal decreased from the previous week by -2.9%.
Domestic iron and steel production increased week over week by +0.3%. Furnace capacity utilization also increased slightly from the previous week by +0.2%. Year to date, U.S. iron and steel production is off -4.9% from the same 46 weeks of 2021. Cumulative furnace capacity utilization is down -3% from the same time last year.
U.S. electrical generation increased from the previous week by +1.9%. Output in the New England, Mid-Atlantic and Southeast regions decreased -1.4% and output from the Central Industrial region increased +3.3%. Compared to the same 46 weeks of 2021, year to date total U.S. electric generation is up +2.2%. Generation in the New England, Mid-Atlantic and Southeast regions is up +0.87% and output in the Central Industrial region is up +0.48%.
Total U.S. rail traffic is declined week over week by -2.3%. Coal carloads decreased -1.1%, steel making traffic declined -8.3% and automaking carloads increased +2.2%. Year to date, U.S. rail traffic is off -2.5%. Coal carloads are up +3.6%, steelmaking traffic is off -7.3% and automaking carloads are up +3.3%.