Daily Ranking: Most Improved State for Business
In state related biz news... as much as the buzz is all about Marcellus Shale, in terms of sheer employment and income I bet coal is still an order of magnitude larger within Pennsylvania. I kind of wonder if coal folks feel left behind these days. Nonetheless, this news is pretty important: Heat Wave in U.S. Driving Coal to 18-Month High: Energy Markets. Think coal isn't being used beyond power generation? Even in this lingering "Great Recession" there is such demand for coke that you see the results in things like the explosion today at Clairton.
A pretty good report done earlier this year on regional coal trends is: The Decline of Central Appalachian Coal and the Need for Economic Diversification. The 'decline' is for the regional coal outlook in general. In the report you will see that Northern Appalachian (that would be under us for the most part) coal output is actually projected to increase output in coming years. Coal is even bigger in West Virginia. I can't find it now, but I saw some article on the potential conversion of coal electricity generation to natural gas and what it will mean to our neighbors to the south. Even bigger for them, some regulatory issues being decided may impact the whole future of coal mining down there.