Skip to main content

Democratic Senate control means dark times ahead for Wyoming coal

January 11, 2021

Billings Gazette:

As the storming of the U.S. Capitol by a pro-Trump mob captured the attention of the nation and world this past week, quieter shifts were already taking place in Washington, D.C., to make way for a new presidential administration.

Some could have big consequences for Wyoming.

Election results for two races in Georgia tipped the U.S. Senate in Democrats’ favor. The blue wave sweeping through Congress and the executive branch likely sets the stage for President-elect Joe Biden to enact his plans to combat global warming. 

But it may be too little too late to save Wyoming’s top industry, according to Dennis Wamsted, an energy analyst at the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis, an energy think tank.

“The bigger issue, from my perspective, is that these carbon capture demonstrations are 10 years too late,” he said. “The market has moved very, very quickly away from the coal industry. There is going to be a huge influx of renewable energy projects in 2021 and 2022 and that is going to eat away (demand) from coal.”

“What you now have is an administration that is going to reinforce those existing market forces,” he added. 

[Camille Erickson]

More: The US Senate flipped. What does that mean for energy in the West?

Join our newsletter

Keep up to date with all the latest from IEEFA