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

Southern (NYSE:SO) recently announced earnings that were down 12% from last year's third quarter. The company continues to experience cost overruns and time delays on its clean coal power project in Kemper County, Miss. While the expenses aren't a big setback for Southern, the extenuating problems could further hamper the already distressed thermal coal market. If more government regulations are passed on to utility companies regarding coal power generation, natural gas would probably win out, leaving coal companies in a dark place. 

Alison Southwick, Joel South, and Taylor Muckerman have no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Southern. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools don't 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.