INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — A new federal report says Indiana's consumption of coal for generating electricity plunged nearly 40 percent between 2007 and 2015 as the state's utilities retired older coal-fired plants and embraced more natural gas and renewable energy sources.
The U.S. Energy Information Administration says Indiana's use of coal for power fell 37 percent largely because natural gas has become cheaper and more plentiful.
Jodi Perras (PEHR'-ihs) of the Sierra Club's Beyond Coal Campaign says the decline reflects the changing energy market and tightening federal regulations on coal-fired power plants.
Indiana Coal Council President Bruce Stevens says there's no question Indiana's reliance on coal for power is decreasing. But he says the fossil fuel that's abundant in the state's southwestern counties will remain a top Indiana power source for decades to come.