Letters to the Editor

King Coal is dead

The May 16 commentary “Ky. right to challenge an anti-mining regulation,” by National Mining Association president Hal Quinn, stated that coal is supplying roughly 35 percent of the U.S. power generation.

Also on May 16, a news report on Bloomberg.com said that on May 15, Germany hit a peak in its renewable energy production (solar, wind, water, biomass) of 45.5 gigawatts out of a total usage of 45.8 gigawatts, while conventional gas/coal power plants were still supplying 7.7 gigawatts of mostly excess capacity.

Whether you divide the total gigawatts of 45.8 into the renewables 45.5 gigawatts (99.34 percent renewables) or into the conventional 7.7 gigawatts (16.8 percent gas/coal), the figures are still telling.

Germany is the canary in the mine for U.S. coal usage, which will continue to suffer a decline no matter how loudly those who tie their purse strings to coal mining cry foul. An additional 18 percent loss of market share is in coal’s future. Burying your head in the sand won’t prevent it. If Germany can convert to renewables, so can the United States. It’s easy to see there is a new king in town: renewables. Long live the king.

Joe and Kathy Crouch