Muchow: WV energy exports helped soften blow of great recession - WTRF 7 News Sports Weather - Wheeling Steubenville

Muchow: WV energy exports helped soften blow of great recession

Posted: Updated:
  • EnergyEnergyMore>>

  • Many WV coal counties losing revenue

    Many WV coal counties losing revenue

    Monday, August 8 2016 10:15 AM EDT2016-08-08 14:15:05 GMT

    As Appalachian coal production continues its drastic decline, West Virginia’s coal-producing counties are  not only losing people as lifelong residents are forced to flee their homes in order to find work, but in many cases, they’re also relinquishing millions of dollars from their budgets.

    As Appalachian coal production continues its drastic decline, West Virginia’s coal-producing counties are  not only losing people as lifelong residents are forced to flee their homes in order to find work, but in many cases, they’re also relinquishing millions of dollars from their budgets.

  • GovernmentGovernmentMore>>

  • Getting schooled on the history of the American polling place

    Getting schooled on the history of the American polling place

    Sunday, November 20 2016 6:00 AM EST2016-11-20 11:00:14 GMT

    If you cast your ballot on Election Day, there’s a strong chance are you did it in a school or other public building. Schools and churches in the Mountain State are the most common locations for setting up polling places. And it’s been that way for a long time.

    If you cast your ballot on Election Day, there’s a strong chance are you did it in a school or other public building. Schools and churches in the Mountain State are the most common locations for setting up polling places. And it’s been that way for a long time.

  • Auditor’s post up for grabs in race without incumbent

    Auditor’s post up for grabs in race without incumbent

    Tuesday, November 8 2016 7:40 PM EST2016-11-09 00:40:26 GMT

    West Virginia voters will pick from among three candidates — Republican J.B. McCuskey, Democrat Mary Ann Claytor and Libertarian Brenton Ricketts — when they cast their ballots for the office of state auditor Nov. 8.

    West Virginia voters will pick from among three candidates — Republican J.B. McCuskey, Democrat Mary Ann Claytor and Libertarian Brenton Ricketts — when they cast their ballots for the office of state auditor Nov. 8.

  • WV Agriculture candidates tout experience

    WV Agriculture candidates tout experience

    Tuesday, November 8 2016 7:40 PM EST2016-11-09 00:40:13 GMT

    The West Virginia Department of Agriculture is responsible for monitoring and regulating meat and poultry production in the state, monitoring and protecting crops and aspects of the state’s food supply, training farmers, promoting agriculture and coming up with new agricultural programs for the state. 

    The West Virginia Department of Agriculture is responsible for monitoring and regulating meat and poultry production in the state, monitoring and protecting crops and aspects of the state’s food supply, training farmers, promoting agriculture and coming up with new agricultural programs for the state.

West Virginia weathered the economic storm better than most other states, and that's partly because so much of the state's economy depends on energy.

Mark Muchow, deputy cabinet secretary of the West Virginia Department of Revenue, told media at the Associated Press Legislative Lookahead Feb. 7 that energy production is the reason West Virginia is considered a growth state.

"Economically, coming out of the Great Recession, West Virginia was one of the leading growth state in the country because we're an energy-producing state," Muchow said.

North Dakota, another energy-producing state, leads the country in terms of growth, he noted. Although the mining industry has ran into trouble as of late, Muchow noted mining has been a growth industry since 2003.

"Not only that, about 86 percent of total GDP growth since 2011 is attributable to the mining sector," he said.

But things in the mining industry began to change at the end of 2011. Coal markets began to shrink, there were changes in the electrical power generation market, many coal-fired power plants across the country began to close and Europe went through its own economic crisis.

"Europe is key … for  West Virginia," Muchow said.

About 40 percent of West Virginia's coal exports go to European markets, he said.

Although coal production was down in 2012, natural gas production increased. Now, natural gas production is up more than 30 percent over 2011, but there's one problem.

"They can't sell the product," Muchow said.

Natural gas prices and natural gas severance taxes are both down, he noted.

"Natural gas severance taxes have been declining faster than coal," Muchow said. Meanwhile, oil production is increasing, "but we don't have a whole lot of oil in this state compared to other states."

Powered by Frankly