Frequently Asked Questions

What is the heat content of U.S. coal?

In 2015, the annual average heat content of coal produced in the United States was about 19.88 million British thermal units (Btu) per short ton (2000 pounds), and the annual average heat content of coal consumed was 19.48 million Btu per short ton.

Learn more:
Appendix A5: Coal and coal coke. This table contains the approximate average annual heat content of coal in million Btu per short ton.
Average quality of fossil fuel receipts for the electric power industry. This table contains the annual average heat content of coal received by the U.S. electric power industry in Btu per pound.
Form EIA-923 database. This database contains the heat content of coal delivered to U.S. power plants by the type and source of the coal in million Btu per short ton. In the database, see the file that includes Schedule 2, and in the file, see the worksheet Table 5 Fuel Receipts and Costs. In that worksheet, see the columns for Energy Source, Fuel Group, and Average Heat Content. The worksheet Page 7 File Layout has definitions for the abbreviations and codes for the data in the other worksheets of the file. 

Last updated: April 19, 2017


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