President Obama's re-election has been described by some as bad news for coal. So it may surprise those who see fuel markets through primarily a political prism that the EIA is forecasting that next year will be a better year for coal than 2012.
Certainly the power generation story of 2012 has been the fierce price competition between gas and coal. Cheap gas drove coal's market share fell well below 40% and is likely to be 37.2% for the whole year, an historically low number.
But, in 2013, the power generation story may well be coal displacing gas generation, as higher gas prices allow coal to recapture some of its lost market share. Indeed, the EIA projects coal's generation market share will rise to 40.2%. www.eia.gov/forecasts/steo/pdf/steo_full.pdf.