The price of coal is on the rise again, and this time it’s coming from the United States.
Coal prices have risen to a record high in 2016, hitting $US5.45 per tonne of coal in January, up from $US2.89 in February, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance.
Coal’s share price has been the biggest gainers of all time, increasing 17% in the past year, according to S&P Global Platts.
It’s also the biggest jump in the last 12 months, according Bloomberg.
The rise in coal prices comes as the coal industry is under increasing scrutiny.
The Environmental Protection Agency has said the US is facing a $1.2 trillion financial crisis due to rising greenhouse gas emissions from the burning of fossil fuels.
In January, the Trump administration said it would ban coal mining in the US.
Trump said he was considering pulling out of the Paris climate accord in 2020 and that coal is an economic liability that he has to pay for.
The Trump administration is also pushing a tax cut that would slash the corporate tax rate to 25% and eliminate some deductions, including those for mortgage interest, charitable contributions and state and local taxes.
With the economy faltering and the US’s coal imports declining, coal mining is expected to decline even more in the coming years.
Coal mining accounts for roughly 25% of US greenhouse gas pollution, according the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.
“I think what we’ve seen is a lot of uncertainty around what the long-term impact is of these carbon pollution reductions, but also, what the future looks like,” said Michael Brune, an economist at the Brookings Institution in Washington.
“Coal is an important part of our energy mix, but coal is not a clean energy.
We’re going to see a lot more coal plants being built, and we’re going, as a country, to pay the price for that.”