U.S. coal exports have continued to decline from their record volumes in 2012. During the first half of 2014, coal exports totaled 52.3 million short tons (MMst), 16% below the same period in 2013, U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) said.
Most of these exports go to countries in Europe and Asia.
In 2013, six U.S. ports shipped 89% of U.S. coal exports. Among them, eastern ports Baltimore and Norfolk represent 55%; and southern ports Houston, Mobile, and New Orleans make up 30%.
Seattle accounted for 5 MMst, or 4%, all of which was steam coal exports. Eastern and southern ports are used to export metallurgical coal because it is produced in the Illinois and Appalachian Basins.
Export declines reflect both lower European demand for steam coal and increased steam coal supply from Australia and Indonesia. Metallurgical coal supply from Australia, Canada, and Russia has also increased. These factors have led to a cumulative decline of 9.0 MMst in coal exports to Europe and Asia during the first half of 2014.
Press Release, October 06, 2014; Image: EIA