January 21, 2016

Natural Gas Use in Power Plants Outpaces Coal, Demonstrating Need for Infrastructure

It’s no secret that natural gas use is on the rise in America. As federal environmental regulations limiting carbon emissions go into effect, power plants have turned to alternative sources to provide power for homes and businesses across America. According to a recent Reuters article, natural gas may have actually surpassed coal as the primary source in generating electricity:

“Power companies in 2015 for the first time may have burned more natural gas than coal to generate electricity, according to analysts who attribute it to the cheapest gas prices in 16 years and a record number of coal-fired plants retired from service because of the high cost of meeting environmental regulations. Data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration showed that power plants used more gas than coal to produce electricity in five of the first 10 months of 2015, including the last four months data was available – July, August, September and October.”

Natural gas is a great transition fuel source. It burns more cleanly than coal and other fossil fuels. Further, low gas prices ultimately benefit the end consumer, resulting in cheaper electricity. In order to fully capitalize on these advantages, we need to ensure that our rich resources of natural gas in the Marcellus and Utica shale formations is able to reach the market. Projects like the Rover Pipeline are perfectly poised to fill that need. The Coalition for the Expansion of Pipeline Infrastructure is excited to see national coverage of the many benefits of natural gas – we call on federal regulators to review these projects to catalyze these positive impacts.