WSJ - Red-Hot Coal Prices Threaten Even Higher Power Bills

June 2, 2022 – Wall Street Journal

Red-Hot Coal Prices Threaten Even Higher Power Bills

By Ryan Dezember

Normally the fix for high coal prices is to switch to burning more natural gas, which is the leading power-generation fuel. But gas prices have popped up since the pandemic, for reasons similar to coal. U.S. natural-gas futures are up 127% so far this year and have been trading at their highest level since 2008.

High prices for both coal and natural gas have obviated the need for fuel switching among power producers and made for fairly inelastic markets in the electricity business, said Sheetal Nasta, an analyst at RBN Energy.

“As long as the gas market remains tight and coal remains unavailable to pick up incremental power demand, there’s no limit to how high prices for both fuels could go,” she said.

Read the full article here: https://www.wsj.com/articles/red-hot-coal-prices-threaten-more-increases-in-power-bills-11654167025