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Mississippi   Mississippi Profile

State Profile and Energy Estimates

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Profile AnalysisPrint State Energy Profile
(overview, data, & analysis)

Last Updated: July 16, 2020

Overview

Located on the nation’s Gulf Coast and bordered on the west by the river that shares its name, Mississippi has a substantial energy infrastructure. The state has many natural gas, crude oil, and refined product pipelines. Mississippi’s larger ports—located on the Gulf of Mexico and the Mississippi River—handle coal, crude oil, petroleum coke, and refined petroleum products.1 Although it is not as rich in crude oil and natural gas resources as some of its neighboring states, Mississippi has significant energy infrastructure, including the biggest U.S. nuclear power reactor and a large petroleum refinery, natural gas processing plant, and liquefied natural gas terminal located along the state’s Gulf of Mexico coastline.2,3,4,5

Mississippi consumes nearly four times more energy than it produces.

Mississippi's humid subtropical climate is typified by long, hot summers, mild winters, and abundant rainfall. Its rich soils, especially between the Mississippi River and the Yazoo River, provide fertile farmland where soybeans, cotton, and corn are the most valuable crops. Although agriculture played a central role in Mississippi's economy in the past, manufacturing is now the leading contributor in the state’s gross domestic product (GDP).6,7,8 The manufacture of motor vehicles and other transportation equipment; food, beverage, and tobacco products; chemicals; and machinery, as well as crude oil production and refining, are substantial contributors to the state's economy.9 Mississippi has an energy-intensive economy and ranks among the top five states in the amount of energy needed to produce one dollar of GDP.10 The transportation sector consumes the most energy in Mississippi—nearly two-fifths of the state total—followed by the industrial sector at about one-third.11 The strong demand for electricity for cooling during summer and heating in winter, along with the state’s energy-intensive industries, puts Mississippi near the top one-fourth of states in per capita energy consumption.12,13 Overall, Mississippi consumes almost four times more energy than it produces.14

Petroleum

Mississippi produces about 0.4% of the nation’s crude oil and holds about 0.3% of U.S. total proved oil reserves.15,16 Most of Mississippi’s oil fields are located in the southern half of the state.17,18 Mississippi has three petroleum refineries with a combined processing capacity of about 394,000 barrels of crude oil per calendar day, and the facilities account for about 2% of the nation's total refining capacity.19 The Pascagoula refinery, one of the nation's largest, is located on Mississippi’s Gulf coast and supplies motor gasoline, diesel fuel, jet fuel, and other petroleum products to markets in the southeastern United States.20 Another refinery, the Ergon facility in Vicksburg on the Mississippi River, is the world’s largest manufacturer of naphthenic process oils, which are used worldwide in many industrial applications.21 The state’s smallest refinery, located in Sandersville, produces asphalt products.22 Mississippi receives additional petroleum products from Texas and Louisiana via two major interstate petroleum product pipelines—the Colonial and Plantation pipelines—that move motor gasoline and other refined products through Mississippi to supply half a dozen other southern and eastern states.23,24

About 11 in 100 Mississippi households rely on propane as their main heating fuel, more than double the national rate.

Petroleum accounts for about two-fifths of the total energy consumed in Mississippi.25 Most of the petroleum consumed in the state is used in the transportation sector, primarily as motor gasoline.26 Conventional gasoline without ethanol is legal statewide, although almost all U.S. gasoline is blended with at least 10% ethanol.27,28 Mississippi ranks among the 5 states with the lowest average gasoline prices, but among the top 10 states in gasoline expenditures per capita.29 About 11 in 100 households in Mississippi use propane as their primary home heating fuel, compared with 5 in 100 households nationwide.30

Natural gas

Mississippi has small natural gas reserves and accounts for only about 0.1% of the nation's natural gas production.31,32 The state’s natural gas production has steadily declined over the last decade, falling to less than half its 2009 output in 2019 and is about one-fifth its peak production in 1981.33

Mississippi has almost 4% of the nation’s underground natural gas storage capacity.

Mississippi is crossed by many interstate natural gas pipelines.34 Natural gas supplies move into the state primarily by way of Louisiana, Alabama, Arkansas, Tennessee, and from offshore production platforms in the Gulf of Mexico. Nearly 90% of the natural gas that enters Mississippi by interstate pipelines continues on to other states, moving mostly through Alabama, Louisiana, and Tennessee.35 Mississippi is one of the few states with large underground salt caverns capable of storing natural gas. The state has 12 underground natural gas storage fields—half are salt caverns and half are depleted oil and gas fields—that can hold a combined 334 billion cubic feet of natural gas, almost 4% of the nation's total underground storage capacity.36

One of the largest natural gas processing plants in the United States is in Mississippi. The plant, near Pascagoula on the Gulf Coast, can process up to 1 billion cubic feet of natural gas per day.37,38 Mississippi also has a liquefied natural gas (LNG) import terminal near Pascagoula that received federal approval to accept LNG imports in 2011.39 However, with the increase in U.S. natural gas production, the terminal's owners plan to add the capability to export up to 1.4 billion cubic feet of LNG per day from the site.40,41,42

The electric power sector accounts for nearly two-thirds of Mississippi’s natural gas consumption, and that sector’s natural gas use has doubled over the past decade. The industrial sector is the second-largest natural gas-consuming sector and accounts for about one-fourth of the state’s natural gas use. The residential and commercial sectors together account for almost all the nearly one-tenth of the state’s remaining natural gas consumption.43,44 Three out of 10 households in Mississippi rely on natural gas for home heating.45

Coal

All of the coal mined in Mississippi is lignite, which has a lower heating value than other types of coal.

Mississippi has almost 1% of the nation’s recoverable coal reserves at producing mines.46 All of the state’s coal production comes from one mine that consists of lignite, which has a lower heating value and higher moisture content than other types of coal.47,48 The Red Hills surface coal mine, located in Choctaw County, Mississippi, is the only producing coal mine in the state. All of the lignite produced from the mine supplies the nearby Red Hills power plant.49 A second coal mine that was to provide lignite to a new advanced integrated coal gasification combined-cycle power plant in Kemper County ceased operations in early 2018 after the plant’s owners stopped using coal gasification for power generation at the facility. Natural gas is now used to generate electricity at the plant.50,51,52,53 About two-thirds of the coal consumed in Mississippi is mined in the state, and the rest comes primarily from Wyoming and Colorado. All of the coal is used by the state’s electric power sector.54

Electricity

Mississippi has the largest nuclear power reactor by generating capacity in the United States.

Mississippi's main fuel for producing electricity is natural gas, which accounted for about 74% of the state’s net generation in 2019 and fueled 9 of the state’s 10 largest power plants.55,56 Nuclear power was the second-largest provider of in-state electricity. The Grand Gulf Nuclear Power Station has the largest reactor by generating capacity in the nation, and it accounted for about 17% of Mississippi's generation in 2019.57,58,59 About 7% of the state’s net generation was fueled by coal, down almost two-thirds from a decade earlier. A new 582-megawatt power plant in Kemper County had planned to generate electricity using a state-of-the-art coal gasification process, designed to reduce carbon emissions, but technological and economic issues led the plant’s owners to switch to using exclusively natural gas. The small amount of the state’s remaining net generation is fueled primarily by biomass and solar energy.60,61,62

Mississippi generates more electricity than it uses, and the surplus power is sent to other states over the regional grid.63,64 The largest share of electricity retail sales in Mississippi goes to the residential sector, accounting for more than two-fifths of the state’s total, followed closely by the industrial sector at about one-third of retail sales and the commercial sector at more than one-fourth.65 Air-conditioning use during the hot summer months and the widespread use of electricity for home heating during the mild winter months drives demand for electricity from Mississippi’s residential sector. Nearly 6 out of 10 of the state’s households use electricity for home heating.66,67,68

Renewable energy

Renewable resources provided nearly 3% of Mississippi’s utility-scale power generation in 2019. Biomass from wood and wood waste accounted for about four-fifths of the state’s utility-scale (1 megawatt or larger) renewable electricity.69 With almost two-thirds of the state forested and more than one-fourth of the state’s land used for agriculture, Mississippi has abundant renewable biomass resources. Mississippi’s biomass resources include logging residue, municipal landfills, crop residues, poultry litter, and livestock manure.70 Some of these biomass resources also provide the feedstock for several wood pellet manufacturing plants in the state that have a combined production capacity of about 618,000 tons of pellets per year.71

Biomass and solar energy account for Mississippi’s electricity generation from renewables.

In 2019, solar energy provided about one-fifth of Mississippi’s electricity generation from renewables. Utility-scale solar power generation, although small at just 0.5% of the state’s total generation, has increased rapidly in recent years. The state’s first solar utility-scale facilities came online in 2017, and solar generation has almost tripled since then.72,73 Mississippi's potential for wind-powered generation is relatively small because of the state's scarce sustained wind resources. There are no utility-scale wind power facilities in the state. While Mississippi has several dams, they are all non-powered, and there is no utility-scale hydroelectric generation in the state.74,75,76,77 Mississippi does not have a renewable portfolio standard requiring electricity suppliers to obtain a certain amount of their power from renewable energy sources.78

Mississippi has three biodiesel production plants that have an annual combined output capacity of about 102 million gallons. One of those plants, located in Natchez, ranks among the ten largest biodiesel plants in the nation by capacity. The state consumes about 36 million gallons of biodiesel a year, about 2% of the U.S. total.79,80,81 Mississippi has no ethanol production plants, but the state consumes almost 163 million gallons of fuel ethanol annually, which accounts for about 1% of the U.S. total.82,83

Endnotes

1 World Port Source, Mississippi United States, Port Index, accessed June 9, 2020.
2 U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), Crude Oil Proved Reserves, Reserves Changes, and Production, 2013–18.
3 U.S. EIA, Natural Gas Reserves Summary as of Dec. 31, 2015, Dry Natural Gas, 2013–18.
4 U.S. EIA, Mississippi Profile Overview, Map, Layers/Legend: Nuclear Power Plant, Petroleum Refinery, Natural Gas Processing Plant, accessed June 16, 2020.
5 Kinder Morgan, Natural Gas Pipelines, Gulf LNG - Existing Import Terminal, accessed June 16, 2020.
6 Mississippi State University, Department of Geosciences, Office of the Mississippi State Climatologist, Mississippi Climate, accessed June 9, 2020.
7 U.S. Department of Agriculture, National Agricultural Statistics Service, 2019 State Agriculture Overview, Mississippi.
8 Wallenfeldt, Jeff, David G. Sansing, and John N. Burrus, Mississippi, State, United States, Encyclopedia Britannica, accessed June 9, 2020.
9 U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, Interactive Data, GDP and Personal Income, Regional Data, Annual Gross Domestic Product (GDP) by State, GDP in current dollars, Mississippi, All statistics in table, 2017.
10 U.S. EIA, State Energy Data System, Table C10, Total Energy Consumption Estimates, Real Gross Domestic Product (GDP), Energy Consumption Estimates per Real Dollar of GDP, Ranked by State, 2018.
11 U.S. EIA, State Energy Data System, Table C1, Energy Consumption Overview: Estimates by Energy Source and End-Use Sector, 2018.
12 U.S. EIA, Electricity Data Browser, Retail Electricity Sales, Mississippi Monthly, January 2001 through March 2020.
13 U.S. EIA, State Energy Data System, Table C14, Energy Consumption Estimates per Capita by End-Use Sector, Ranked by State, 2018.
14 U.S. EIA, State Energy Data System, Table P3, Total Primary Energy Production and Total Energy Consumption Estimates in Trillion Btu, 2018.
15 U.S. EIA, Crude Oil Production, Annual, Thousand Barrels, 2014–19.
16 U.S. EIA, Crude Oil Proved Reserves, Reserves Changes, and Production, Proved Reserves as of 12/31, Annual, 2013–18.
17 Mississippi State Oil and Gas Board, Oil and Gas Map of Mississippi, accessed June 9, 2020.
18 U.S. EIA, Mississippi Profile Overview, Map, Layers/Legend: Oil Wells: High-Level View, accessed June 9, 2020.
19 U.S. EIA, Refinery Capacity Report 2020 (June 22, 2020), Table 1, Number and Capacity of Operable Petroleum Refineries by PAD District and State as of January 1, 2020.
20 Chevron, Chevron Pascagoula Refinery 2020 Snapshot.
21 Ergon Refining Inc., Ergon, Refining and Marketing, accessed June 9, 2020.
22 Hunt Refining Company, Refining Operations, Sandersville Refinery, accessed June 9, 2020.
23 Colonial Pipeline Company, System Map, accessed June 9, 2020.
24 Kinder Morgan, Plantation Pipe Line Company (PPL), accessed June 9, 2020.
25 U.S. EIA, State Energy Data System, Table C1, Energy Consumption Overview: Estimates by Energy Source and End-Use Sector, 2018.
26 U.S. EIA, State Energy Data System, Table C2, Energy Consumption Estimates for Selected Energy Sources in Physical Units, 2018.
27 American Petroleum Institute, U.S. Gasoline Requirements (January 2018).
28 U.S. EIA, “Almost all U.S. gasoline is blended with 10% ethanol,” Today in Energy (May 4, 2016).
29 U.S. EIA, Table E20, Motor Gasoline Price and Expenditure Estimates, Ranked by State, 2018.
30 U.S. Census Bureau, House Heating Fuel, Table B25040, 2018 ACS 1-Year Estimates Detailed Tables, United States, Mississippi.
31 U.S. EIA, Natural Gas Reserves Summary as of Dec. 31, Dry Natural Gas, Annual, 2013–18.
32 U.S. EIA, Natural Gas Gross Withdrawals and Production, Marketed Production, Annual, 2014–19.
33 U.S. EIA, Mississippi Natural Gas Marketed Production, Annual, 1967–2018.
34 Mississippi State Oil and Gas Board, Oil and Gas Map of Mississippi, accessed June 13, 2020.
35 U.S. EIA, International and Interstate Movements of Natural Gas by State, Mississippi, 2013–18.
36 U.S. EIA, Natural Gas Annual 2018 (October 31, 2019), Table 14, Underground natural gas storage capacity by state, December 31, 2018.
37 U.S. EIA, Mississippi Profile Overview, Map, Layers/Legend: Natural Gas Processing Plant, accessed June 13, 2020.
38 Enterprise Products Partners L.P., Natural Gas Processing Plants and Related NGL Marketing, accessed June 13, 2020.
39 Kinder Morgan, Natural Gas Pipelines, Gulf LNG - Existing Import Terminal, accessed June 13, 2020.
40 DiSavino, Scott, “Kinder Morgan's planned Gulf LNG export plant in Mississippi passes environmental test,” Reuters (April 17, 2019).
41 Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, North American LNG Export Terminals, Proposed (updated March 19, 2020).
42 Kinder Morgan, Natural Gas Pipelines, Project Overview, accessed June 13, 2020.
43 U.S. EIA, Natural Gas Consumption by End Use, Mississippi, Annual, 2014–19
44 U.S. EIA, Mississippi Natural Gas Deliveries to Electric Power Consumers (Million Cubic Feet), 1997–2009.
45 U.S. Census Bureau, House Heating Fuel, Table B25040, 2018 ACS 1-Year Estimates Detailed Tables, Mississippi.
46 U.S. EIA, Annual Coal Report 2018 (October 3, 2019), Table 15, Recoverable Coal Reserves at Producing Mines, Estimated Recoverable Reserves, and Demonstrated Reserve Base by Mining Method, 2018.
47 U.S. EIA, Annual Coal Report 2018 (October 3, 2019), Table 6, Coal Production and Number of Mines by State and Coal Rank, 2018.
48 Thieling, Stan, David E. Thompson, and Michael B. E. Bograd, Lignite Resources of Mississippi, Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality, Office of Geology, Fact Sheet 2 (August 2009).
49 PurEnergy , Choctaw Generation LP, Red Hills Power Plant, accessed June 13, 2020.
50 Southern Company, “Southern Company and Mississippi Power Announce Suspension of Gasification Operations at Kemper,” Press Release (June 28, 2017).
51 Amy, Jeff, “Utility faces federal investigation over failed $7.5 billion Kemper power plant,” Associated Press (May 1, 2019).
52 Brock, Jim, “Kemper Coal Operation to Cut 75 Jobs,” The Meridian Star (August 9, 2017).
53 NACCO Industries, Inc., Form 8-K filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (February 8, 2018).
54 U.S. EIA, Annual Coal Distribution Report 2018 (October 3, 2019), Domestic distribution of U.S. coal by destination State, consumer, destination and method of transportation, Mississippi, Table DS-21, 2018.
55 U.S. EIA, Electricity Data Browser, Net Generation for All Sectors, Annual, Mississippi, 2001–19.
56 U.S. EIA, Mississippi Electricity Profile 2018, Table 2A, Ten largest plants by capacity.
57 Entergy, Grand Gulf Nuclear Station, accessed June 13, 2020.
58 U.S. EIA, Nuclear Reactor, State, and Net Capacity (December 2019).
59 U.S. EIA, Electricity Data Browser, Net Generation for All Sectors, Annual, Mississippi, 2001–19.
60 U.S. EIA, Electricity Data Browser, Net Generation for All Sectors, Annual, Mississippi, 2001–19.
61 Southern Company, “Southern Company and Mississippi Power Announce Suspension of Gasification Operations at Kemper,” Press Release (June 28, 2017).
62 Amy, Jeff, “Utility faces federal investigation over failed $7.5 billion Kemper power plant,” Associated Press (May 1, 2019).
63 U.S. EIA, Mississippi Electricity Profile 2018, Table 10, Supply and disposition of electricity, 1990 through 2018.
64 U.S. EIA, Mississippi Profile Overview, Map, Layers/Legend: Electric Transmission Line>-345 kV, accessed June 25, 2020.
65 U.S. EIA, Electricity Data Browser, Retail sales of electricity (million kilowatthours), Annual, Mississippi 2001–19.
66 Mississippi State University, Department of Geosciences, Office of the Mississippi State Climatologist, Mississippi Climate, accessed June 13, 2020.
67 U.S. EIA, Residential Energy Consumption Survey (RECS), 2015 RECS Survey Data, Air conditioning, Table HC7.8, Air conditioning in homes in the South and West regions, 2015 (May 2018).
68 U.S. Census Bureau, House Heating Fuel, Table B25040, 2018 ACS 1-Year Estimates Detailed Tables, United States, Mississippi.
69 U.S. EIA, Electricity Data Browser, Net Generation for All Sectors, Annual, Mississippi, 2001–19.
70 Mississippi Development Authority, Developing Our Biomass Resources, accessed June 14, 2020.
71 U.S. EIA, Monthly Densified Biomass Fuel Report (June 17, 2020), Table 1, Densified biomass fuel manufacturing facilities in the United States by state, region, and capacity, March 2020.
72 Mississippi Power, About Energy, Solar Power, accessed June 14, 2020.
73 U.S. EIA, Electricity Data Browser, Net Generation for All Sectors, Annual, Mississippi, 2001–19.
74 U.S. Department of Energy, Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, WINDExchange, Wind Energy in Mississippi, Maps & Data, accessed June 14, 2020.
75 American Wind Energy Association, AWEA State Wind Energy Facts, Mississippi, accessed June 14, 2020.
76 National Hydropower Association, Mississippi, accessed June 14, 2020.
77 U.S. EIA, Electricity Data Browser, Net Generation for All Sectors, Annual, Mississippi, 2001–19.
78 U.S. EIA, Renewable Energy Explained, Portfolio Standards, accessed June 14, 2020.
79 U.S. EIA, Monthly Biodiesel Production Report (June 30, 2020), Table 4, Biodiesel producers and production capacity by state, April 2020.
80 Biodiesel Magazine, US Biodiesel Plants, operational, updated December 5, 2019.
81 U.S. EIA, State Energy Data System, Table F26, Biodiesel Consumption Estimates, 2018.
82 U.S. EIA, U.S. Fuel Ethanol Plant Production Capacity (August 26, 2019), Detailed nameplate capacity of fuel ethanol plants by Petroleum Administration for Defense District (PADD District) are available in XLS.
83 U.S. EIA, State Energy Data System, Table F25, Fuel ethanol consumption estimates, 2018.