US Coal Exports
Exports Economic Contributions Report

The United States exports more coal to other countries than it imports. Between 2000 and 2010, about 5% of the coal produced in the United States, on average, was exported to other countries.

coal-quarterly_imports_exports

Coal exports were up more than 65 percent last year (2017). The following list shows the top five countries of U.S. coal exports, export amount (million short tons) in 2017:

  • India- 11.4
  • Korea- 9.5
  • The Netherlands- 9.4
  • Japan- 7.7
  • Brazil- 7.5

The U.S. exports metallurgical coal and steam coal. Metallurgical coal can be used for steel production, and steam coal can be used for electricity generation. Metallurgical coal dominates U.S. coal exports.

According to the World Energy Council, more than one-fourth of the world’s economically recoverable coal reserves are in the United States – making the U.S. the largest repository of coal in the world.

In 2016, about 728 million short tons of coal were produced in 25 states. Five states produced a total of about 509 million short tons, or about 70% of total U.S. coal production. The five largest coal-producing states with production in million short tons and their share of total U.S. coal production in 2016:

  • Wyoming: 297.2 (41%)
  • West Virginia: 79.8 (11%)
  • Pennsylvania: 45.7 (6%)
  • Illinois: 43.4 (6%)
  • Kentucky: 42.9 (6%)

coal-quarterly_production


Read more on these pages:

How is U.S. Coal Exported?

Where is U.S. Coal Exported?

Environmental Responsibility

Reports and Resources


Fast Fact

Coal is present in 38 states and underlies nearly half a million square miles — or 13 percent of the nation’s land area.

 Fast Fact

The state with the most coal production is Wyoming, which mined approximately 376 million tons in 2015. 

 Fast Fact

Of the coal mined in the United States, more than 90 percent is used to generate electricity at home and abroad. 

  • “The fact that we’re no longer in the age of energy scarcity – that we’re in the age of energy abundance – positions the United States in a totally different place. This gives access to affordable, reliable energy in the United States, and gives the U.S. a major competitive advantage.”
    – Dave Banks, Special Assistant to President Donald Trump for International Energy, June 2017
  • “It is in the national interest to promote clean and safe development of our Nation's vast energy resources, while at the same time avoiding regulatory burdens that unnecessarily encumber energy production, constrain economic growth, and prevent job creation. Moreover, the prudent development of these natural resources is essential to ensuring the Nation's geopolitical security.”
    – Executive Order on Promoting Energy Independence and Economic Growth, March 28, 2017
  • “Historically, U.S. companies seeking to expand their revenues focused first on increasing their number and share of U.S customers. For years, this focus served as a winning strategy for many of the most successful U.S. companies. Today, global economic trends make clear that successful companies are those that reach and sell to consumers outside U.S. borders and around the globe.”
    — 2011 National Export Strategy, U.S. Trade Promotion Coordinating Committee
  • “Federal regulatory agencies should not require climate change studies in the course of their permitting processes for proposed facilities. Coal will be consumed around the world regardless of U.S. trade policy. The only question is whether the coal is produced here in North America, where environmental standards are high, or elsewhere.”
    — U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski, January 7, 2014
  • “At present 19% of the world’s population, 1.3 billion people, lack access to electricity and on New Policy Scenario projections there will still be 1 billion people without such access in 2030. To meet the UN Millennium Development Goal of eradicating extreme poverty by 2015, 395 million more people need access to electricity. There is a strong correlation between electrification and improvement in the United Nations’ Human Development Index.”
    — International Energy Agency, Coal Industry Advisory Board
  • “Access to electricity is strongly correlated with every measurable indicator of human development”
    — Berkeley Science Review, 2008

Count on Coal

National Mining Association

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