Coal Tattoo

Coal’s share of U.S. power at record low

Fascinating new data from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Energy Information Administration:

The share of electricity generated by coal during the first three months of this year was at its lowest first-quarter level in more than 30 years. The U.S. electric power sector generated about 440 terawatthours (TWh) using coal during the first quarter of 2011, which is 26.5 TWh less than the amount generated during the first quarter of 2010—despite the fact that the overall total level of generation in the United States increased by less than 1%. The amount of coal-fired generation in the first quarter of 2011 corresponds to a 46% share of total generation, which is 3 percentage points lower than the same period last year and 6 percentage points lower than the first quarter of 2008.