Worldwide Coal Use Declines for the First Time in Ten Years

Coal Declines Global Whisperer

China leaps into the lead as largest energy consumer, yet worldwide coal use declines.

For the first time in ten years, coal use has fallen around the world. Overall usage is down .5%, but when compared to an average rise of 4.3% every year for the last ten years, it might seem cause to celebrate.

Before we pop the champagne though, we look closer. The biggest factors in the decline are markets in Europe and Asia, which have slowed coal use, but partially to economic recession. On the other hand, China and India’s use has risen, offsetting much of the worldwide drop off.

worldwide the number of nuclear reactors is expected to increase 20%.

As China sprints into the lead as world’s largest energy consumer earlier this year, all eyes look to see “behind the bamboo curtain” at their future energy plan. China’s may be experiencing growth in coal consumption, but they are investing even more resources into other sources, such as nuclear.

Coal Use in China

There is no clean coal.

China is expected to add 42 new reactors before 2019, and worldwide the number of reactors is expected to increase 20%. Out of the pan and into the fire, as airborne carcinogens decline, nuclear waste piles up. Still, with new research and staggering efficiency, nuclear power appears here to stay in the foreseeable future.

A Good Sign

On a brighter note, wind power in Inner Mongolia has reached an output capacity of 7.3 GW as of this year. That’s a 170 MW increase since 2005, and the China Huaneng Group is in the midst of another 1.2 GW wind power project in the area. They also applied for an initial public offering for a alternative energy unit branch on November 11th of this year. Our hats off to the Huanena Group for its increased focus on renewable sources.

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