New data from The Energy Information Administration shows that coal fired electricity consumption reached a 32 year low in 2016. The administration found the electricity sector used 35% less coal last year than it did when coal fired electricity usage peaked in 2008. While these numbers don’t account for the amount of coal pulled from the ground in the U.S., the Energy Information Administration estimates that coal fired electricity accounted for 93% of total coal consumption in 2016. The factors affecting decreasing coal production are numerous, but one of the largest issues is the availability of the cheaper natural gas alternative. This cheap alternative, led to The Energy Information Administration predicting that electricity the United States receives from natural gas will soon surpass that generated from coal.