This segment is from Tuesday's edition of 'Digging for Value', in which sector analysts Joel South and Taylor Muckerman discuss energy & materials news with host Alison Southwick. The twice-weekly show can be viewed on Tuesdays & Thursdays. It can also be found on Twitter, along with our extended coverage of the energy & materials sectors @TMFEnergy.

One of the nation's oldest coal companies, CONSOL Energy (NYSE:CNX), has decided to trim its coal operations by one-third in terms of reserves and EBITDA. One of the reasons why CONSOL has decided to pare its coal assets is that its focus has been increasingly dedicated to natural gas production in the Marcellus shale. On top of that, Central Appalachian coal is some of the most expensive in the nation to mine. This is one of the reasons why Arch Coal (NYSE:ACI) has begun to move its thermal operations to the lower cost Powder River Basin. For more details on this deal, tune in below.

Natural gas has played a huge role in our energy boom. Which companies should you focus on?

Joel South has no position in any stocks mentioned. Taylor Muckerman owns shares of CONSOL Energy. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.