| March 11, 2021 | Energy
In 2020, U.S. coal exports declined to 69 million metric short tons (MMst), a 26% decrease from 93 MMst in 2019. Steam coal exports, which accounted for 40% of the total, declined by more than one-third, dropping 34% from the previous year to 27 MMst. Metallurgical coal had a smaller, but still significant, decrease of 20%. The COVID-19 pandemic slowed global demand for coal, and some U.S. coal mines were idled for extended periods to slow the spread of the virus. Coal exports decreased significantly in April 2020 as the United States and countries around the world responded to the pandemic.