More News and Commentary

On the Blogs: Doubts in West Virginia About Coal Resurgence West Virginian historian Chuck Keeney, who has written extensively on the state’s coal industry and its miners, said he has not seen a noticeable change in the mood of the state’s residents since Trump became president. “A lot of West Virginians understood that they were rolling the dice with Trump,” explained Keeney, a professor […]

June 19, 2017 Read More →
IEEFA Update: Two Sets of Data Tell the Same Tale: U.S. Coal Industry Continues to Shed Jobs

IEEFA Update: Two Sets of Data Tell the Same Tale: U.S. Coal Industry Continues to Shed Jobs

Transition in Local and Regional Energy Economies Calls for a Strategy to Promote Growth, Replace Jobs and Sustain Fiscal Budgets

In a research report we published in January, we explained how the U.S. coal industry will very likely continue its overall decline in a trend that will be accompanied by both employment and market volatility. A passage from that report (“Short-Term Gains Muted by Prevailing Weaknesses in Fundamentals”): “Some mine openings and some attendant hirings […]

Editorial: Coal Jobs Are Not Coming Back

The problem is that coal has declined mostly from competition, not environmental regulation. Coal can’t compete with the abundance of cheap natural gas, much of which is produced right here in Texas. Trump can’t change this dynamic. For example, a 2016 Brattle Group report for the Texas Clean Energy Coalition found that by 2035, 85 […]

April 30, 2017 Read More →

Energy Job Trends Favor Solar

New York Times: Last year, the solar industry employed many more Americans than coal, while wind power topped 100,000 jobs. Those numbers come from a Department of Energy report published in January by the Obama administration that provides the most complete picture available of American energy employment. In 2016, 1.9 million Americans were employed in […]

April 25, 2017 Read More →

What’s the Fastest-Growing Occupation in America?

Washington Post: The fastest-growing occupation in the United States — by a long shot, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics — might surprise you: wind turbine technician. The number of workers maintaining wind turbines, a job with a median pay of about $51,000 a year, is set to more than double between 2014 and […]

April 20, 2017 Read More →

Georgia’s Hammond Coal Plant Cuts Half Its 140-Employee Work Force

Atlanta Journal-Constitution: Georgia Power is cutting over half of its work force at a coal-fired plant near Rome even as state regulators have been re-examining some of its operations. The Atlanta utility said 80 jobs are being eliminated at Plant Hammond, a 63-year-old facility on the Coosa River near Rome. Georgia Power spokesman John Kraft […]

April 13, 2017 Read More →

Op-Ed: The Job Killer Called Automation

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: As with the broader manufacturing sector, the loss of coal mining jobs over the last half-century owes more to automation than to government policy. A tripling in mine productivity partially explains why coal output has increased by 20% since 1980 while mine employment has fallen by 75% over that same period. Despite […]

April 10, 2017 Read More →

IEEFA Press Release: ‘Zero Employment Impact’ In Trump Administration’s New Energy Policies

Decline of U.S. Coal Industry Will Continue; Production Will Drop; Investors Will Jump Ship; Few Gains From Regulatory Relief; Increasingly Dim Employment Prospects

The Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis today dismissed job-production claims that the Trump administration made this week with its rollback of emissions regulations and federal mining policies. Tom Sanzillo, IEEFA’s director of finance, said the coal industry especially remains unlikely to recover, regardless of what the administration does. “Market forces overwhelmingly favor natural gas-fired electricity […]

March 29, 2017 Read More →

On the Blogs: Miscasting the Issue Won’t Bring Back Jobs

BuzzFeed: EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt said on ABC’s This Week the order would counter “the past administration’s effort to kill jobs across this country.” He suggested the administration’s environmental policies would be both pro-jobs and pro-environment, following clean air and clean water rules while asking federal agencies over the next six months to identify rules […]

March 29, 2017 Read More →

Commentary: ‘Monumental Job Growth’ in U.S. Clean Energy Sector

U.S. News & World Report: Multiple news outlets have reported that the federal budget President Donald Trump plans to submit to Congress Thursday will gut or even eliminate two principal Department of Energy research efforts fueling a renewable energy revolution in the United States. That would be an enormous mistake. Whatever else the Republican Party […]

March 16, 2017 Read More →