Consumption of natural gas by U.S. power generators fell by 3% year/year in 2021 after four straight years of growth, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) said Monday.

“High natural gas prices in 2021 made natural gas a less competitive fuel, particularly compared with coal; coal prices for electricity generators remained relatively stable in 2021,” said EIA researchers led by Kristen Tsai.

Wholesale spot prices at the Henry Hub in Louisiana nearly doubled from 2020 to 2021, driven by surging LNG export demand, researchers noted. 

[Want to visualize Henry Hub, Houston Ship Channel and Chicago Citygate prices? Check out NGI’s daily natural gas price snapshot now.]

“U.S. natural gas prices rose throughout 2021 because of tighter supply and demand balances, low...