Over 13 GW of coal power plants built between 1950-70 were retired in 2015, averaging 133 MW per plant. In Texas, the price drop of natural gas has reduced the capacity factor in 7 of the state's coal plants (max. output 8 GW), and they contribute about a quarter of the state's electricity.
The United States is closing 46 coal-fired generating units at 25 electricity plants across 16 states over the next few years, transitioning to natural gas or intentionally closing them, and a new report shows that this will likely result in eliminating about 30 million tons of annual coal demand by the end of 2018.
According to 2005 data from the Energy Information Administration, Texas has 20 operating coal-fired power stations, including 40 generating units, totaling 21,238 megawatts (MW) of capacity. 39 of the generating units are larger than 50MW. Click on the locations shown on the map for plant details.
Texas leads the nation in wind-powered generation capacity with more than 21,450 megawatts; since 2014, Texas wind turbines have produced more electricity than both of the state's two nuclear power plants. Texas is the nation's largest producer of lignite coal. About 40% of the coal-fired power plants in Texas burn lignite for electricity generation.
Many coal-fired power plants in Texas no longer act as "baseload plants," and are instead limited to operations during the peak load seasons. Although coal-fired plants generated 39 percent of the electricity in ERCOT in 2015, by May of 2016 they provided only 24.8 percent.
Wind generation replaced coal in the number two position in 2017. ERCOT has also approved the planned connection of much new generation capacity to the Texas electric grid, none of it coal. The permitted new connections to the grid include 2,000 megawatts from solar sources, 8,700 megawatts from wind generation, and more than 10,000 megawatts from natural gas.
Cheaper renewable energy is reshaping how electricity is generated and consumed. In many U.S. electricity markets, including Texas, coal-fired power plants are being retired because they can no longer compete on price compared with other sources of energy, including wind and solar. But is there a ...
To see a nationwide list of over 600 coal plants in the United States, click here. To see a listing of coal plants in a particular state, click on the map: This page provides information on existing U.S. coal-fired power plants. For a list of proposed coal plants and coal plants that are under ...