By Dustin Bleizeffer 

Railroad under fire for costly decrease in coal shipments


December 29, 2022

Alan Nash/WyoFile

A pair of coal trains idle at a switchyard near a coal loadout facility in northeast Wyoming.

Union Pacific Railway, one of two railroad companies that haul coal out of the Powder River Basin, is under fire for curtailing shipments to customers, including power plants. The failure to meet customer coal demand has resulted in less coal-fired power generation and higher costs to ratepayers for natural gas purchases to replace coal power.

Coal-fueled power plants nationwide have responded by "curtailing operations for parts of the year in order to conserve fuel for peak seasons," National Coal Transportation Association Executive Director John Ward told WyoFile. "The winter of 2021 saw...

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