08 May 2024

US Coal Exports to Rise, Production Declines

08 May 2024  by reuters   
The U.S. Energy Information Administration revised its coal export forecast upwards, driven by stronger-than-expected February data and progress restoring access to the Port of Baltimore while coal- production declined in April.

Metallurgical coal exports, primarily produced in Appalachia, were expected to reach 8 million short tons (MMst)in April and May despite concerns about the Port of Baltimore, a key export hub, which is responsible for "roughly 20% of metallurgical coal exports flow."

The overall coal export forecast for April and May also climbed 9% to 13 MMst, contributing to a 4% increase in the EIA's annual coal exports forecast for 2024, at 99 MMst.

However, domestic coal production saw a 19% dip from March to April as miners entered the shoulder season with high inventories.

The EIA predicted production to rebound in the coming months, peaking at 49 MMst in August before declining through the end of the year.

Overall, U.S. coal production is expected to reach 500 MMst in 2024 and decline slightly to around 490 MMst in 2025.

Last month, the EIA had revised its April coal exports forecast down by 33%, and lowered its view for May by 20% due to the collapse of the Francis Scott Key Bridge in Baltimore and resulting port closure.

Rebuilding the collapsed bridge is expected to cost between $1.7 billion and $1.9 billion and to be completed by fall 2028.


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