West Virginia Department of Commerce Fossil Energy

Recent Pages: Fossil Energy

Fossil Energy

Energy is a critical component of West Virginia’s economy.
  • West Virginia exports two-thirds of the electricity it generates.
  • The state exports 50 percent of the natural gas it produces.
  • Meanwhile, the state’s electricity costs are among the lowest in the country, providing a key advantage to businesses and residents.

West Virginia is the second-largest coal producing state in the nation:
  • It produces roughly 150 million tons of coal each year.
  • Only 22 percent of the coal is used in-state to produce electricity, the remaining 78 percent is exported to Eastern and Midwestern states, as well as globally.
  • Coal generates almost half the electricity in the United States, and the greening of the coal industry is key to America's energy security.
  • The new clean coal technologies can capture carbon and enhance natural gas and oil production, furthering coal's future.

West Virginia has announced advanced coal technology projects in the past year:
  • The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection issued the first carbon dioxide sequestration permit at the Mountaineer Plant in Mason County
  • TransGas Development Systems LLC is pursuing a $3 billion coal-to-liquids plant in Mingo County, which will be operational by 2013.
  • In Marshall County, Consol will convert coal to synthetic methanol and gasoline

Environmental responsibility is a key feature of West Virginia’s pursuit and development of advanced energy solutions:
  • West Virginia’s Governor Manchin is advocating post-mine land use planning so the state’s citizens can benefit from the land – either recreationally or through agriculture – after the coal is mined.
  • The administration is committed to reaching energy independence by 2030:
    • West Virginia passed the Alternative and Renewable Portfolio bill that requires 25 percent of the state’s energy production to be alternative or renewable sources by 2005.
    • With existing wind and hydro projects, the state soon will have the equivalent of 20 percent of its in-state electric consumption produced by renewable sources.