Coal has been the life blood of West Virginia since the first seams were discovered in the 18th century. As of 2022, it was the second-largest coal producing state in the nation and coal-fired electric power plants accounted for over 90% of its total electricity net generation. It’s also sitting on the Marcellus, Rogersville, and Utica shale formations, making it one of the top producers in natural gas. Even though it has some hydroelectric facilities and wind turbines, only around 5% of its energy was generated from renewable resources. Transitioning from fossil fuels is going to be a complicated process.
You can learn more about these complexities by earning an energy degree or certificate from a WV school in our listings. If you’re interested in WVU’s programs, take a moment to visit the WVU Institute for Sustainability and Energy Research (WISER) and examine its list of collaborating organizations. Coal and gas research are high on the list of priorities. You may also want to talk to faculty in the WVSU Energy & Environmental Science Institute (WVSUEESI). The institute runs a Research Rookies Program in energy-related research for freshmen & sophomore students.