West Virginia

IEEFA Research

IEEFA U.S. Coal Outlook 2017: Short-Term Gains Muted by Prevailing Weaknesses in Fundamentals

IEEFA U.S. Coal Outlook 2017: Short-Term Gains Muted by Prevailing Weaknesses in Fundamentals

Production Declining by as Much as 40 Million Tons; Prices Failing to Benefit Shareholders or Stimulate New Investment; Anemic Exports; Little or No Gain From Regulatory Relief; Increasingly Dim Employment Prospects

We’re out this morning with our annual outlook for U.S. coal markets, and the picture isn’t pretty. We see the potential for some short-lived strength in the current uptick for coal producers but the title of our assessment sums up the larger view: “Short-Term Gains Will Be Muted by Prevailing Weaknesses in Fundamentals.” You can […]

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IEEFA Report: A Cynical Re-Regulation Strategy in West Virginia

IEEFA Report: A Cynical Re-Regulation Strategy in West Virginia

FirstEnergy’s Machinations Around the Pleasants Power Station Are Designed to Shift Risk to Ratepayers

In seeking to get the West Virginia Public Service Commission to allow it to sell all or a portion of its Pleasants Power Station, Ohio-based FirstEnergy Corp. is following a strategy of re-regulation that stands to benefit shareholders at ratepayer expense. The coal-fired 1,300-megawatt Pleasants plant is currently owned by a FirstEnergy deregulated subsidiary, Allegheny […]

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In Ohio, AEP and FirstEnergy Adopt an Audacious Strategy That Could Cost Ratepayers Dearly

In Ohio, AEP and FirstEnergy Adopt an Audacious Strategy That Could Cost Ratepayers Dearly

A Model First Established in West Virginia Is Being Pushed Now in the Buckeye State

We’ve posted a research note today that explains how reregulation schemes in Ohio by FirstEnergy and AEP bear a striking resemblance to one approved in West Virginia that resulted in a recent push to raise electricity rates by 12.5 percent. The gist of our memo, “West Virginia Bailout Emboldens FirstEnergy and AEP in Ohio,” is […]

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Report: FirstEnergy Seeks a Subsidized Turnaround

Report: FirstEnergy Seeks a Subsidized Turnaround

FirstEnergy: A Major Utility Seeks a Subsidized Turnaround (pdf) By Tom Sanzillo, Director of Finance and Cathy Kunkel, Fellow Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis

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Report:  No evidence of a turnaround at Prairie State

Report: No evidence of a turnaround at Prairie State

No Evidence of a Turnaround at Prairie State (pdf) By David Schlissel, Director of Resource Planning Analysis

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Report: Mountain State Maneuver: AEP and FirstEnergy try to stick ratepayers with risky coal plants

Report: Mountain State Maneuver: AEP and FirstEnergy try to stick ratepayers with risky coal plants

Mountain State Maneuver: AEP and FirstEnergy try to stick ratepayers with risky coal plants (pdf)      

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Report- The Prairie State Coal Plant: The Reality vs. the Promise

Report- The Prairie State Coal Plant: The Reality vs. the Promise

Report- The Prairie State Coal Plant: The Reality vs. the Promise (pdf).

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More News and Commentary

Grass-Roots Resistance to Pipeline Company’s Eminent Domain Orders in West Virginia

Stuebenville (Ohio) Herald-Star: As a 29-year Army soldier and former West Virginia State Police trooper, trooper, Larry Helmick said he is no stranger to the federal courthouse in Wheeling, where he and dozens of other property owners face a sweeping eminent domain lawsuit from the company building the $4.3 billion Rover Pipeline. “I have testified […]

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As West Virginia’s Billionaire Governor Pushes for Budget Cuts, His Back Coal-Business Taxes Remain Unpaid

Andrew Brown for the Charleston Gazette-Mail: As Gov. Jim Justice and his staff have drafted their first budget proposal, the billionaire businessman-turned-politician continues to owe the state more than $3 million in coal severance taxes that his businesses have failed to pay, as of Feb. 6. If Justice’s privately owned businesses were to pay those […]

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On the Blogs: As Industry Replaces Workers With Machines, ‘Bleak Outlook for Trump’s Promises to Coal Miners’

Devashree Saha and Sifan Liu for the Brookings Institution: The problem facing the coal industry is not unique: Automation is rapidly reducing employment in mining and manufacturing. Across a wide range of industries, from car manufacturing to computing, robots or artificial intelligence are increasingly taking over roles traditionally performed by humans. The same is true […]

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Billions of Dollars in Coal Cleanup Left Unfunded in West Virginia

Michael Virtanen for the Associated Press: West Virginia officials say $4.5 billion worth of work remains at more than 3,300 sites abandoned by coal companies before 1977, when Congress passed a law establishing a national fund for old cleanups. That program was part of an effort to heal the state from the ravages of an […]

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‘Regulatory Battle’ Seen Around FirstEnergy’s Push to Put West Virginia Power Plant Risk on Ratepayers

Darren Sweeney for SNL: Monongahela Power Co.’s search for 1,300 MW of generation capacity to fill an expected capacity shortfall seems routine on its face, but a long and contentious battle is likely lurking. The FirstEnergy Corp. utility, which primarily operates in West Virginia, said in December 2016 that it is seeking proposals for the […]

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IEEFA U.S. Coal Outlook 2017: Short-Term Gains Muted by Prevailing Weaknesses in Fundamentals
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IEEFA U.S. Coal Outlook 2017: Short-Term Gains Muted by Prevailing Weaknesses in Fundamentals

Production Declining by as Much as 40 Million Tons; Prices Failing to Benefit Shareholders or Stimulate New Investment; Anemic Exports; Little or No Gain From Regulatory Relief; Increasingly Dim Employment Prospects

We’re out this morning with our annual outlook for U.S. coal markets, and the picture isn’t pretty. We see the potential for some short-lived strength in the current uptick for coal producers but the title of our assessment sums up the larger view: “Short-Term Gains Will Be Muted by Prevailing Weaknesses in Fundamentals.” You can […]

Read More →

IEEFA U.S. Coal Outlook 2017: Short-Term Gains Muted by Prevailing Weaknesses in Fundamentals

Production to Decline by as Much as 40 Million Tons; Prices Will Not  Benefit Shareholders or Stimulate New Investment; Anemic Exports; Few Gains From Regulatory Relief; Increasingly Dim Employment Prospects

Jan. 19, 2016 (IEEFA.org) – The Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA) today published its U.S. Coal Outlook 2017 in which it describes an industry like to decline further this year, though at a slower pace than in 2016. The report—“IEEFA U.S. Coal Outlook 2017:  Short-Term Gains Will Be Muted by Prevailing Weaknesses […]

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Outgoing W.V. Governor: Coal Industry ‘Won’t Ever Return to the Levels That We Once Saw’

From the Associated Press: The governor declared attracting business as his top priority for a state that has faced both a national recession and several coal mine closings. During his farewell speech Wednesday, he cited Procter & Gamble’s decision to build a factory in the state’s eastern panhandle as well as Toyota’s $1.4 billion investment […]

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Questions Mount on FirstEnergy Subsidy Scheme for West Virginia Power Plant

Linda Harris for the (West Virginia) State Journal: Public interest groups across the state contend the utility’s RFP is anything but transparent. Groups like WV Sun and Energy Efficient WV suggest the RFP document was crafted to fit the needs of Mon Power’s parent company, FirstEnergy. FirstEnergy wants to move its 1,300-megawatt Pleasants Power Station, […]

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FirstEnergy Pushes Ahead With Plan for Ratepayers to Subsidize West Virginia Coal Plant

Andrew Brown for the Charleston (W.V.) Gazette: Shareholders for FirstEnergy saw the company lose $1.1 billion over a three-month period earlier this year, and executives with the coal-laden electric utility have announced that many of their power plants can’t keep up in competitive energy markets. So as the Akron-based company looks to stop the bleeding, […]

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