U.S. coal rail traffic down almost 38% in week ended March 26

During the week that ended March 26 the number of carloads of coal that moved along railroads in the United States was down 37.8% from the same week in 2015, according to the latest data from the Association of American Railroads (AAR).

During the week ended March 26, more than 66,000 coal cars were transported via rail, according to AAR. While coal continues to be the largest line item for U.S. railroads (non-metallic minerals was a distant second at more than 32,000 carloads), coal traffic continues to slid dramatically, according to AAR data.

Year-to-date coal traffic over U.S. railroads is reported at 875,559 carloads or an average of 72,963 cars per week. That’s down 32% from the same point in 2015, AAR said.

Looking at North America as a whole, coal traffic for the week ended March 26 was reported at 74,334 cars, which was down 35.6% from the same week in 2015. Year-to-date coal traffic in North America is listed at 961,480 carloads for an average of 80,123 per week so far in 2016.

The bottom line is that North American coal traffic by rail is down 30.8% year-to-date, according to the AAR data.

About Wayne Barber 4201 Articles
Wayne Barber, Chief Analyst for the GenerationHub, has been covering power generation, energy and natural resources issues at national publications for more than 20 years. Prior to joining PennWell he was editor of Generation Markets Week at SNL Financial for nine years. He has also worked as a business journalist at both McGraw-Hill and Financial Times Energy. Wayne also worked as a newspaper reporter for several years. During his career has visited nuclear reactors and coal mines as well as coal and natural gas power plants. Wayne can be reached at wayneb@pennwell.com.