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Might be more coal burned in 2022 than any other time in human existence

Coal use likely to set new 8 billion ton record this year (and next year too)

How’s that transition going then?

The IEA reports that the stranded dead asset is probably about to hit an all time record high:

For 2022 as a whole, we expect global coal demand to increase by 0.7% from 2021 to about 8 billion tonnes. This would match its all-time peak reached in 2013…

Worldwide coal consumption in 2021 rebounded by 5.8% to 7 947 million tonnes (Mt), according to our data, as the global economy recovered from the initial shock of the Covid pandemic and higher natural gas prices drove a shift towards coal-fired power generation.

Current coal price tonight: $407.90. Also almost a record. So we have highest volume at the highest price, and people want you to believe that no one wants coal.

China burns 53% of the world’s coal:

Coal demand in China, the world’s largest consumer by far, increased by 4.6%, or 185 Mt, in 2021, reaching an all-time high of 4 230 Mt.

India becomes the second country in the world to join the billion-ton-coal-club:

India consumed 1 053 Mt of coal in 2021, a new all-time high and the largest amount consumed in a single year by any country other than China.

One country in particular, isn’t trying to reduce coal by 2030:

So how high was that 2013 peak record? Strangely, the IEA doesn’t tell us, perhaps because it was just 8,002 Mt — which they thought then was a “historic high”.  They even said that “global coal consumption will not return to its 2018 levels”.

Curiously, if we take the 2021 figure of 7,947 Mt and add their estimated 0.7% increase we get 8,002.6 Mt. What are the odds? But even if coal use doesn’t set a new record this year, it almost certainly will next year.

In 2020 coal use fell to 7.2b tons.

Peak Coal in 2013

Peak coal again?

 

9.5 out of 10 based on 83 ratings

96 comments to Might be more coal burned in 2022 than any other time in human existence

  • #
    John Hultquist

    May I cheer?
    Having grown up in coal country (western Pennsylvania) with relatives and friends working in the industry, and having high school seniors (I was a student teacher) driving coal trucks from the cuts to the tipple, and living in a house heated with coal for my first few years —
    I think I’ll raise a glass.

    851

    • #
      Geoff+Croker

      All those miners pushing CO2 reduction are providing iron ore to …….. China. No steel making, no industry, no electricity required, no coal burning power stations.

      Will China double its coal use if it goes for EVs? Yes it will. Soon China will account for 100% of current emissions.

      311

    • #
      mareeS

      We drove from our home in the coal port of Newcastle today, up through the Hunter Valley coal mining and agricultural region via Singleton, Denman and Ulan, all major coal mining centres, to where we are staying tonight in the lovely agricultural and former gold mining centre of Mudgee.

      We did this in roughly 4hrs in a Mazda3 ice vehicle using about $25 of petrol at $2.02/l.

      The boom is maintaining jobs and prosperity at present here. Will we be able to say the same about any of this in 2032 if global economic and climate marxists have their way?

      70

    • #
      RobK

      So how does coal investment compare? RTWT.
      https://www.mining.com/globally-more-is-being-spent-on-coal-than-copper-mining/

      Red metal goes green
      The decarbonisation revolution is not off to a great start though, not if you compare investments in the worst of the fossil fuels in terms of emissions – coal – with that of copper, without which there simply is no green energy transition.

      Copper’s metal intensity – kilograms required per MW produced – of renewable energy sources like solar and wind is nowhere near that of coal or gas. To generate 1MW of offshore wind energy around 8.2 tonnes of copper have to be installed. The same figure for coal is 882kg.

      According to one study, in order to reach net-zero by 2050, 19 million tonnes of additional copper need to be delivered. That implies a new La Escondida – the world’s largest copper operation by a wide margin – must be discovered and enter production every year for the next 20 years.

      50

  • #
    Erasmus

    It’s time!
    Time to put coal back into the “coalition” with a vengeance.

    741

    • #
      Lawrie

      While you’re at it you might want to buy the Coalition a backbone and perhaps Ian Plimer’s book. It is obvious few of them have an even rudimentary knowledge of earth history and the role of carbon in the life cycle. There are still some left leaning wets in the Liberal Party who failed to learn from the success of the Teals in the last election. Dutton needs to throw his weight around now at the beginning of his term to set the path ahead. Any cave in to the ALP/Green coalition will be a treachery to the 37% of the population who voted against the ALP policy of 43%. The Coalition has to be an opposition with a real plan for the future rather than just a weaker version of the government.

      491

      • #
        el+gordo

        Dutton will be a true Opposition leader, but first he has to purge the Party moderates.

        ‘Peter Dutton will resist pressure from Liberal moderates to back Anthony Albanese’s emissions ­reduction target.’ (Oz)

        182

        • #
          Graham Richards

          Liberal party will back Labor agendi in their everlasting hope of winning over Greens & now the Teals.

          04

        • #
          William

          I agree el gordo – thankfully the teal started the process federally by removing the worst of the alarmist renewables useless idiots but he has to stand strong and accept that fighting to be more green than those idiots is the wrong direction, rather he has to accept those seats are lost for now and to concentrate on working Australia and win the seats where people are suffering from the lunatic drive to energy poverty.

          191

          • #
            el+gordo

            Unfortunately the Moderates are running the Nats, which could potentially bring on a Coalition split. Also we don’t know how many Liberal Moderates survived the election.

            Still, to quote Emiliano Zapata, ‘it is better to die on your feet than to live on your knees’.

            51

          • #
            Zigmaster

            Whilst I would love to see the Libs at a federal level represent its more conservative base, until state liberals take a stand nothing will happen. We desperately need protracted outages and serious power rationing together with skyrocketing energy prices to shock voters into voting for parties that support coal and nuclear. This should be state liberals but if you have idiots like those who’ve been in charge you have to vote for minor parties. The Libs have to be taught that unless they provide an alternative to the green energy mantra they risk not even being the opposition in some states. When Liberal state parties try to outgreen Labor they have totally lost the plot. No good Dutton wanting to talk nuclear if the state liberals (and federal liberals) don’t argue against zero emissions by 2050. At what stage will the media and people look at what’s happening in the two countries where half the world lives and shrug their shoulders and say what’s the point. Even if they are right on climate change , which they are not, what’s the point. It’s clear that every effort made to reduce emissions is immediately negated ( and worse). Perhaps they should just accept that maybe we should stop trying to change the weather ( climate) and adapt to whatever happens. If they are wrong and climate change isn’t an issue that’s great, and if they’re right and it is an issue then adaption will mitigate the more serious consequences caused by it.
            What we are doing now makes zero sense and I can’t understand how everyone can’t realise how we are being duped.

            40

        • #
          not_teal

          Apparently the liberal party has decided not to support the 43% target, but will support a target larger than the one they took to the election, mostly to please the ‘moderates’. At least we now know who they are so we make ensure they are voted out in the next election.

          91

      • #
        David Maddison

        The Victoriastan Liberals, pretend conservative party, think they can win the next election by being even more stupid than Labor.

        https://thenewdaily.com.au/news/state/vic/2022/07/17/victorian-opposition-emmissions-pledge/

        The Victorian Coalition is promising to legislate an emissions reduction target of 50 per cent by 2030, if it wins the November state election.

        Opposition Leader Matthew Guy on Sunday unveiled the policy, which matches Victorian Labor’s target and is higher than the 43 per cent goal set by the federal government.

        SEE LINK FOR REST

        81

  • #

    Ironically of course the reason that China produces the vast majority of the worlds solar panels is that it has access to cheap and plentiful coal with which to make them. Not to mention free labour in the form of coerced Uighurs.

    572

  • #

    Let’s be realistic that the powers that be want to reduce co2 . Anyone know how clean coal can become using the latest techniques in a modern power station?

    181

    • #
      Eng_Ian

      The solution to pollution is dilution.

      The cleanliness of power stations can be found in the environment impacts statement of EVERY power station that has been recently constructed in the western world. Enjoy the reading, the numbers will not be on the first page.

      Imagine how much better you will sleep at night knowing all the details. And how much better you will sleep at night with that tome.

      61

    • #
      Lawrie

      They don’t and don’t want to know. How can they say no to coal in order to gain some Green votes but try to convince them that this coal fired power station is 40% cleaner than the old one. Of course they would never accept that such a coal plant would produce less CO2 than the construction of wind turbines sufficient to produce the same amount of electricity. You well know that these turkeys hate facts.

      231

      • #
        Ted1.

        Liddell power station has been operating for 50 years, and I have never seen smoke coming out of its smokestacks.

        The truth of the matter is that our power stations have been modern for a long time.

        The idea that they emit pollution relies on the lie that carbon dioxide is harmful.

        Technology has no doubt advanced in that time, but the 50 years old technology is not too bad.

        81

    • #
      Ronin

      Compared with an equal output gas fired unit, the latest ultrasupercritical units emit about the same amount of CO2, not that that matters anymore as we all know CO2 is beneficial to plant life.

      151

    • #
      Mike Jonas

      Tonyb – Using the latest techniques in a modern power station, coal can be very clean indeed. But that’s not what the greens mean with their corruption of the language.

      81

  • #
    Kalm Keith

    An interesting poke at the anti-coal push.

    One feature of life in 2022 is that many areas of the world still use natural energy, like trees and handy vegetation, to replace or supplement absent or irregular supplies of electricity. Dried dung may also be used.

    Coal fired electricity generation can be the cleanest, cheapest and most reliable source of power when political intervention is removed from the process and there is nothing else available at the moment, in Australia, that can hold a candle to it.

    Experimental / development work on the introduction of the next cheapest alternative, Nuclear power, is the next step after we upgrade our coal fired plants to current technology.

    Like John, I grew up in a coal fired city that was thankful for the power despite the dirty side effects. The big failure has been political interference holding back the adoption of current best practice.

    391

    • #
      Graeme#4

      Pedantically, nuclear SMR should be slightly cheaper than USC coal or CCGT gas, mainly due to their expected longer lifetimes. But there is not much difference.

      21

      • #
        Kalm Keith

        Hi Graeme, about four years ago I heard from an informed source that there was a clear separation between nuclear and coal and it wasn’t in favour of nuclear.
        Renewables were again, more expensive than nuclear.

        Now that the SMR systems might be available I accept that coatings could have moved. Do you have any more background info on this, particularly landed costs here in Australia.

        21

        • #
          Graeme#4

          Certainly Keith. I took the Full Cost Of Energy (FCOE) figures from the SMR Nuclear Technology report: http://www.smrnuclear.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/2021_9_Cost-of-Nuclear-Power-and-Renewables.pdf
          And removed the CCS component from the Fossil Fuel costings, using the information from the CSIRO GenCost Report. (I didn’t see any reason to have this component there.)
          Without CCS, the basic overnight costs per kW generated for each energy source are:
          SMR: $5316
          Solar: $1100
          Wind: $1700
          CCGT gas: $1542 (Think figure was generated before gas price increase.)
          USC coal: $3600
          After CF adjustment (NOTE: I’ve used their CFs for Wind and Solar, but these are too optimistic. 35% Wind CF is wrong – as Tony advises, it’s closer to 30%.)
          SMR: $5596
          Solar: $5500
          Wind: $4857
          CCGT gas: $1713
          USC coal: $4000
          After adjustment for plant lifetime: (Based on Nuclear plant lifetime)
          SMR: $5596
          Solar: $13200
          Wind: $9714
          CCGT gas: $4112
          USC coal: $4800
          After adjustment for firming (I don’t think the “firming is sufficient, but left figures as is.)
          NOTE: No adjustments for extra transmission lines required.
          SMR: $5596
          Solar: $14882
          Wind: $12372
          CCGT gas: $4112
          USC coal: $4800
          The SMR Nuclear Technology company used the data from the CEC, Aurecon and GenCost reports, but I believe that there are many errors in this data. Still, it does form a basis for an initial evaluation. that can be refined with better data.

          51

  • #
    Penguinite

    So we allow China to burn coal like there’s no tomorrow. In the process compromise our very existence on some futile plan to be carbon neutral by 2050 or 2030 if Greens have their way. How dumb is that?

    411

  • #
    David Maddison

    The problem is that these are facts.

    The whole fossil fuel, anthropogenic global warming fraud discussion has gone way beyond the use of facts.

    Don’t forget that the Left, who are the main ones behind the movement against cheap and reliable energy, subscribe to post-modernism.

    In post modernism belief, there is no such thing as objective reality. In other words, facts simply don’t matter to them.

    This explains why the Left are unresponsive to facts.

    Many postmodernists hold one or more of the following views: (1) there is no objective reality; (2) there is no scientific or historical truth (objective truth); (3) science and technology (and even reason and logic) are not vehicles of human progress but suspect instruments of established power

    See the following article for the full list of beliefs.

    https://www.britannica.com/topic/postmodernism-philosophy

    211

    • #
      David Maddison

      I should clarify that the above mostly applies to the “useful idiots of the Left”.

      Those that tell the useful idiots what to think and do, the Elites, know precisely what they are doing.

      That is, the Elites are getting the useful idiots to destroy cheap and reliable coal, gas, nuclear and even hydro energy and replace it with solar, wind and battery infrastructure which is not fit-for-purpose whose sole purpose is to harvest subsidies from taxpayers for the personal enrichment of Elites.

      251

      • #
        Ian

        “That is, the Elites are getting the useful idiots to destroy cheap and reliable coal, gas, nuclear and even hydro energy and replace it with solar, wind and battery infrastructure”

        Who or what are these Elites to whom you often refer?

        011

        • #
          David Maddison

          Who or what are these Elites to whom you often refer?

          As stated, it includes those making money harvesting taxpayer subsidies from unfit-for-purpose solar, wind and Big Battery installations. And all those otherwise trying to reduce the standard of living an individual rights of ordinary people. It includes those who fly to climate conferences on private jets. Etc. Etc. Etc.

          150

      • #
        Ted1.

        Post modernism? For how long?

        I used to define it as 36. The year they look back and wonder how they could have been so wrong for so long.

        Except a lot of them never notice it.

        It is, however, an inescapable fact that most of the young blokes eventually get to be the old blokes.

        30

    • #
      Honk R Smith

      This is an important video with a concise description of Modernism, Post Modernism or Post Structuralism explained Post Modernly.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N0NIs1fOkQg

      20

  • #

    With the large number of Coal Fired Power Stations now being built around the World (NOT in the ‘Clever Country’ Australia though), King Coal will remain King for a long, long time to come. No its (or other pronouns) or buts either.

    160

  • #
    TdeF

    And the effect of all this on CO2 levels. Zero.

    CO2 levels are wholly and solely determined by sea surface temperature. If the water surface gets hot, CO2 comes out and v.v.

    And as CO2 goes up, we get more trees in exact proportion as determined by NASA and the CSIRO.

    So the biosphere is irrelevant. Humans are irrelevant. Coal is irrelevant. If you doubled the amount of CO2, you would double the amount of trees.

    The fundamental reason is that the ocean contains 98% of the CO2.

    And our political parties of all types are following the mantra that we have to grow a tree if we output CO2. In fact the oceans control the weather and the CO2. We and our trees and our old trees (Coal) are irrelevant.

    Nett zero is the value of the idea. Utterly wrong, non science, foolish fantasy. Based on the foolish idea that temperature is controlled by humans who live on the top two metres of the surface of a planet of molten rock 13,000km thick spinning through space at 107,000 km per hour.

    290

    • #
      yarpos

      We had record low levels of fuel use at the peak of the Covid madness

      We now will likely have record coal burning as endure Energy madness

      Meanwhile the CO2 levels the climanistas obsess about still click away doing the seasonal steps they have been doing for many many years. Its almost like we have no influence, but of course that cant be so can it?

      150

    • #

      If you doubled the amount of CO2, you would double the amount of trees.

      can you explain this and how it is relevant. I don’t see extra trees appearing around the place.

      Also, the amount of CO2 released by coal burning is pretty uncontroversial and easily calculated (ie burn some coal and measure CO2). How can adding CO2 not change CO2 levels?

      016

      • #
        Serge Wright

        NASA took some satellite measurements a few years back on the growth of the biosphere, which is a bit more scientific than your urban observations of neighbourhood trees.

        https://www.nasa.gov/feature/goddard/2016/carbon-dioxide-fertilization-greening-earth/

        Basically, more CO2 means a larger biosphere, which in turn means the earth can support more animal life. CO2 is the source of life on earth and it’s no surprise that during periods of high CO2 in the earth’s paleo history, life forms boomed, such as during the Jurassic period. Dinosaurs roamed the earth when CO2 was between 2000 and 4000 ppm and this period was accompanied by mega flora as plants boomed with ample CO2 and water vapour. Low CO2 periods are devoid of trees, which require more than 150ppm to survive. The slight increase in CO2 caused by humans is important for the planet because carbon becomes sequestered and trapped over time. For example, the lignite turned coal that we burn today was previously locked away and now that it’s released into the atmosphere it will create plant life that otherwise could not have occurred. The extra plant life then supports more insects, mammals and reptiles, etc. Basically, the gas emitted from a coal plant is creating life and restoring the biosphere to what is was in an earlier paleo period. If you believe that nature is perfect, then humans were created to release the trapped carbon to maintain life on earth.

        160

      • #
        Graeme No.3

        But what were the CO2 levels in the Holocene Climate Optimum? The temperature is admitted to have been 1℃ higher than at present yet the CO2 levels (taken from ice cores) were lower. The Sahara was green, with standing waterholes – see Tassili frescos – yet we are told that Henry’s Law couldn’t have been operating then.

        40

        • #
          TdeF

          As I have pointed out, instantaneous CO2 levels are not reported by ice cores. They measure back hundreds of thousands of years and the average CO2 levels over that time. On that scale an increase of 50% in 150 years is incredibly rapid and the time resolution of ice core techniques cannot give this data. There is leaching in the process, so what you get are long averages and connecting them to instant measurements of CO2 is bad science producing quite wrong inferences as to the speed of change of both temperature and CO2.

          100

      • #
        TdeF

        “How can adding CO2 not change CO2 levels?”

        Good question. Because of physical equilibrium. It vanishes quickly.

        There is very rapid exchange of gases between the ocean and the air. The amount of gas in the air and not dissolved in the ocean is critically dependent on ocean surface temperature, not the amount of gas. This is Henry’s law.

        So if you release extra CO2, it gets swept up in this huge exchange of gases and part of the larger equilibrium. The biosphere is so small that it has no impact on CO2 in the air. And you may not seen extra trees but your vision is very limited. NASA have been watching this phenomenon since the early days of satellites and the deserts are shrinking and green cover is growing quickly. I just don’t think they care much about your place and how many trees you see. But your lawn may be 14% more lush.

        More about equilibrium. Fish breathe and output CO2. They need O2. So there is a continual renewal process. And it happens both above and below the water surface. Bubbles. And gas has nowhere to go. Once it is out of the water it cannot head off to outer space because our planet is not hot enough. Only monotomic Helium has the power to weight ratio to reach ‘escape velocity’ and escape earths’ gravity. The only reason we still have Helium on the planet is radioactive decay.

        So how is the amount of each gas in the air decided? Henry’s law. And as CO2 is 30x more soluble than O2 and highly compressible and sinks where it is compressed much more, there is a vast amount of CO2 swirling around in the oceans. The IPCC says it plays no part in the exchange. The IPCC says it takes 80 years to cycle though the air. Most of these people have no idea.

        The proven cycle time is around 5 years. And it is easy to prove that fossil fuel CO2 is under 4% of total aerial CO2. So that’s our entire contribution. And if we stopped producing CO2, it would be 2% in 5 years, 1% in 10 etc.

        As for relevance, nett zero states that you if you burn a tree you have to grow a tree to stop CO2 going up. That is not true. The total of our CO2 output is 1% of total biosphere exchange, possibly much lower. And the total biosphere is not 1% of the total of CO2. So trees have gone up 14% by NASA (actually trees and bushes and grasses) and CO2 has gone up 14%. The world denies Nett Zero. And besides, the amount of CO2 output by humans is absolutely negligible given the size of the total amount of CO2 in play.

        As I wrote above, annual Coal CO2 is a tiny 16 billion tons against 380,000 billion tons.

        130

        • #

          So equilibrium…in summary at time zero there is an even exchange of CO2 between water and air. Atmospheric [CO] is steady.

          If we chuck a bunch of CO2 into the air the total amount of CO2 in the biosphere (a helpful term) goes up. Initially that CO2 is in the air – the differential from the ocean means a net movement into the ocean until equilibrium is reached again. At equilibrium the air will still have more than before.

          27

          • #
            TdeF

            Yes. Correct. But in the same ratio, 98:2, water to air. So if we increase total CO2 by 1%, the increase in the air will be 0.02%.

            60

        • #

          The IPCC says it plays no part in the exchange.

          here is some IPCC nothing for you to read.
          https://www.ipcc.ch/site/assets/uploads/2018/02/TAR-03.pdf

          here they discuss a concept where they specifically talk about the compressed CO2 stored int he deep ocean

          https://www.ipcc.ch/site/assets/uploads/2018/03/srccs_chapter6-1.pdf

          Have you been advising them or did they manage to science this up themselves?

          37

          • #
            TdeF

            No, I haven’t. And it is still wrong, the old story that CO2 in the deep ocean plays no part with CO2 in the air. Stuck on the bottom according to the IPCC.

            “Captured CO2 could be deliberately injected into the ocean at great depth, where most of it would remain isolated from the
            atmosphere for centuries.”

            Absolute rubbish. The cycle half life is 5 years. And they have effectively admitted it.

            The reason the age of the water at the bottom is centuries older is not that it take so long to get to the top. It takes that long for ALL of the CO2 at the bottom to exchange with the atmosphere. Consider they agree the CO2 in the air is only 2% of the CO2 in the water.

            So how long would it take to exchange all the CO2? Take the 2% in the air means it would take 50x the exchange time to give all the CO2 a holiday in the atmosphere. 300/50 = 6 years for a full exchange of the CO2 in the atmosphere for CO2 in the ocean, which is precisely what I have said.

            Anyone can work this out. The IPCC is playing games, conflating the age of the CO2 at the bottom with the residence time of the CO2 in the air. Or perhaps they are just not real scientists. The report is edited by politicians, not scientists. Many have resigned because of this.

            140

            • #
              TdeF

              And the IPCC would not want me on the team. I would tell them all to go home. The very raison d’etre of the IPCC is man made, government controlled Climate Change. In other words, megalomania and oceans of cash. Hundreds of billions.

              120

        • #
          TdeF

          And we didn’t make CO2. As element number six, there is a massive amount of carbon in the galaxy. And like most metals, it exists as an oxide. Pure carbon does exist as graphite and diamond, but it is rare. However early lifeforms evolved in the ocean to capture sunlight with carbon dioxide and store it as carbohydrate. The catalyst was likely a form of Vitamin A and later became chlorophyll. And this was so successful we ended up with all this oxygen in the air instead of largely carbon dioxide.

          However if carbon dioxide falls below 0.02%, it is likely that all the plants would die. That would return CO2 to the air. CO2 has been worryingly low, so it is good that it is climbing again. And the planet is greening. And it took the United Nations search for cash for their 40,000 staff to come up with ‘man made Climate Change’. This was the first thing the IPCC did in 1988. It’s in the name. No surprises there. And don’t expect the UN Climate Change department to admit that it is all made up. They are still demanding hundreds of billions of dollars.

          110

          • #
            TdeF

            And another observation that the three ingredients in photosynthesis are water, carbon dioxide and sunlight. But the NASA observation indicates clearly that the limiting factor is carbon dioxide. So increased CO2 produces an identical increase in Green cover. So proven. CO2 is in perpetual short supply.

            The corrollary of that is that fossil fuel CO2 does not pile up in the amtmosphere and we humans need to grow more trees. Trees grow if and only if there is more CO2 and in doing so they do not reduce the amount of CO2!. How is that possible? Surely trees sequester vast amounts of CO2?

            The answer is that the amount of CO2 in the air is NOT determined by the number of trees. That is quite irrelevant. What determines the amount of CO2 in the air is solely the temperature of the ocean surface. So no matter how many trees we burn or trees we grow (actually they grow themselves) the CO2 level is completely outside human control. Nett zero is rubbish, pointless fantasy, fake science.

            110

          • #

            ? Is that meant for me? Like I (or anyone) thought that elemental carbon is a human creation? I might just have to get out of the lab and hand back my PhD.

            14

          • #
            TdeF

            The UN/IPCC Green Climate Fund. This is the real reason for man made Global Warming

            “A decade after that Copenhagen summit, arguments still rage over whether the $100-billion goal is close to being met”

            “A rethink of these spending targets is coming. This year the GCF, which was pledged an initial $10.3 billion and is running out of money, needs wealthy nations to refill its coffers.”

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      • #
        Gerry

        Gee Aye ….You are clearly under the spell of the “CO2 is a significant global warming agent” and the spell that “global warming is a problem”.. Being on these pages for so long and so often I should have thought you would have reflected on these issues a lot more than you seem to have.

        140

    • #
      Peter C

      I like your theory TdeF but here is a question.
      Why is the atmospheric CO2 going up when sea surface temperatures have been steady for the last 7-8 years?

      00

  • #
    TdeF

    The record 8 billion tons of burned coal produces 16 billion tons of CO2.

    This adds to the 3,208 billion tons of CO2 already in the air which is itself only 1% of what is in the water.

    So what?

    Why aren’t we allowed to burn our own coal? Why are only the Chinese allowed burn coal?

    210

    • #
      TdeF

      This annual 16 billion tons of coal CO2 is about the amount exchanged between the air and the water each week.

      140

  • #
    Serge Wright

    What I find curious is that the green media such as “their ABC” seem quite ok with coal burning, provided it’s not coal that is burned or mined down here. Basically, countries such as China could ramp up coal by 10x their current consumption and the ABC would be still solely focused on whatever tiny amount we had remaining down here.

    210

  • #
    Zane

    The latest ultra-supercritical coal power plants are both efficient and low emissions. Almost on par with CCGT. Yes, you can have your cake and eat it. However, no one in the Australian government understands this. It would make sense to generally use coal for electricity where available and natural gas for transportation, cooking, heating, making fertilizers etc.

    Capitalism allocates resources rationally. Governments often do not, as the Dubai police using Lamborghinis as patrol cars might indicate.

    😃

    50

    • #
      Graeme No.3

      Zane:
      I am not sure that your claim is correct. The Gullible Deep Teals think that any generation deficiency will be handled by OCGTs – their beloved Peaking Plants, and these certainly emit around the same as modern coal-fired plants.
      The emissions from latest CCGT plants are lower than from the latest coal-fired plants, so long as they can run continuously. Trying to run them as Open Cycle increases emissions and costs. And as gas prices have shot up recently neither type can compete on cost with coal.

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      • #
        Zane

        No doubt more gas peakers will have to be built if any more big coalies are retired from service. It’s not about economic rationality, it’s about pandering to voting inner city vegan green-smoothie sipping radicals. Because otherwise they might wave signs and protest outside the Sydney parliament and make Perrotett look like a nasty climate denialist, you see?

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      David Maddison

      Zane, of what relevance is “low emissions” as applied to CO2? All coal plants today have appropriate emissions controls for actual pollution.

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      • #
        Zane

        I speak of sooty particulates forsooth, and of the elementary ideal of combustion physics that the lower the emissions the more hydrocarbon fuel matter has been turned into usable thermal energy, which heats the substance known as water in turn creating steam which spins turbines whose magnets encased within copper coils create the magic of electrickery so necessary to modern life.

        Industrial powers such as Japan and Korea who need to import 99% of their energy know well that this must be burned as efficiently as possible.

        While Victoria with its large brown coal reserves faces no such constraints. Except Dandrews’ radical ideology, of course, and the Northcote City Council which has by now probably changed its moniker to something unpronounceable and aboriginal.

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    OldOzzie

    Europe’s looming coal crisis

    A shortfall of the fuel would be particularly painful for Poland and Germany.

    Move over gas — there’s a new energy shortage in town.

    As Europe faces its worst energy crunch in decades amid the war in Ukraine, national capitals have been scrambling to shore up their gas reserves ahead of the winter. But another fuel could also soon be in short supply: coal.

    Although the highly polluting fuel has earned pariah status as the EU looks to slash emissions, consumption is on the rise as a number of countries, including Austria and the Netherlands, either switch old coal-fired plants back on or boost existing capacity to save on gas.

    The problem is that the EU will soon be deprived of its biggest supplier: The bloc slapped sanctions on Russian coal in April, forbidding further imports starting August 10.

    That means the 2 million tons of coal it is set to receive from Russia this month will be the last such shipment, said Alex Thackrah, a senior coal analyst at the market intelligence firm Argus Media.

    Add to that serious logistical challenges in sourcing and transporting the fuel from elsewhere, and “it’s certainly going to be a challenge to get enough coal this winter,” he said.

    Indonesia, South Africa and Colombia are all potential suppliers, but EU countries will face “extremely high prices” due to the particularly high-calorific type of coal normally used across the bloc, according to Thackrah. Coal prices on the API2 Rotterdam hub, a European benchmark, hit $380 per ton last week, already a more than fourfold increase on this time last year.

    The EU will also face “stiff competition” from players such as India and South Korea, which have existing coal supply agreements with many of these countries, said Mark Nugent, an analyst at the shipbroker Braemar.

    Logistical issues risk complicating matters further.

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      OldOzzie

      Biden’s Climate Plans Are Unsustainable

      The current White House agenda is so unrealistic it risks a backlash that will hurt the cause for decades.

      By Stuart Gottlieb

      But the administration first needs to reckon with the peril of the moment. America’s announced climate goals seek a transition to 100% clean electricity by 2035 and net-zero emissions by 2050. This aggressive timeline is increasingly at odds with three hard realities: economic, geostrategic and political. Each sets a major hurdle for climate action, and together they expose the unsustainability of the Democratic Party’s climate agenda.

      To begin with, the agenda is economically unsustainable. According to the federal Energy Information Administration, global demand for energy will rise nearly 50% by 2050, with fossil fuels still accounting for roughly 75% of world supply. Though many Democrats insist this simply proves the urgency of making the transition, there are no economic models showing how that could occur without causing massive harm to the underlying economy. A McKinsey & Co. report shows that achieving net-zero emissions by 2050 would require nearly $6 trillion in new spending globally every year for the next 30 years—roughly equal to one-third of all tax receipts by every government in the world. Even if that were possible, it wouldn’t resolve the severe economic costs of energy-supply volatility throughout the transition, particularly for the poor.

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    Zane

    China uses huge amounts of coal to make cement in its rotary cement kilns. China is the world’s biggest producer and user of cement to feed its real estate and infrastructure construction binge. This overbuilding is basically what drives the Chinese economy, but it’s starting to unwind now with banks going insolvent and limiting depositors’ withdrawals. The older cement kilns are highly polluting and inefficient but local vested interests keep them going. Newer cement plants by multinationals like French biggie Lafarge are far more effective but, as I said, the owners of existing kilns are bribing local cadres to avoid environmental regulations and merrily carrying on producing and selling their cement to builders and developers linked to Chinese provincial governments.

    Once China’s real estate bubble finally bursts I expect coal use to moderate significantly.

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    exsteelworker

    Once the stupid Western government’s destroy their reliable baseload power generation,like they have in the EU ,ENGLAND, WW3 will start. It will be a walk over for the new axis of coal-fired power generating country’s. Can’t fight a war with renewables lol.

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    • #

      You certainly CAN fight a war with renewables.
      By day, if it’s windy…..
      And if you have long enough leads for your Armoured Cars and Tanks and Jeeps, and Rigs of every size,
      And helicopters, if you want them to fill the skies.
      With apologies to CW McCall!

      Auto

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    Ronin

    Oh dear…. the Battery of the Nation, Tasmania appears to running out of vital fluid.

    Might have to start looking for all the gas turbine bits and bobs again.

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    • #
      Hanrahan

      I’ve noticed that. Has it been dry down there?

      I once tried to see what their storage was like but there is no BIG dam, just a myriad of small ones prone, I imagine, to large short term fluctuations.

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  • #

    Have a look at the site at the following link.

    The World’s coal plants in 2020

    This is a map which shows all the coal fired power plants on the Planet as of 2019. You can see the coloured grouping is largest over China and India, and scroll in with your mouse hovered over that huge concentration over China, and as you get closer in, all the dots indicate the power plants, with names Nameplate plant type etc.

    The graph at left shows, well the skyrocketing line for China, and the (relatively) straight lines for everywhere else, and hover your mouse over a line and it indicates the Country and Nameplate for coal fired power.

    Okay then, here’s a little exercise for you. (and scroll back out till you see the whole of World image)

    At the left where you have that graph, immediately above the graph you’ll see that blue coloured bar under the year heading.

    With your mouse on the white circle, move that circle left back to 2000, and just look at the map as the ‘dots’ disappear.

    Now wind it back up to 2019. The map just ‘lights up’.

    Umm, cool, eh!

    Tony.

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    • #
      John Hultquist

      Tony,
      Thanks for that.
      Washington State has only the one major facility,
      and about 4 dozen small “thermal” generators.
      I’m 117 air miles from Centralia with only
      Mt. Rainier in my line of view.

      “The Mountain” helps produce interesting clouds
      near its top, perhaps with a little help from
      the water vapor coming from the facility 50 miles
      away.
      Image search: lenticular clouds mt rainier

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    Neville

    Here’s the OWI data relative change in co2 emissions since 1989 and of course China stands out.
    And upper middle income and lower middle income countries as well.
    But high income countries and low income countries have reduced their co2 emissions since 1989.
    But I didn’t expect the low income countries to have reduced co2 emissions by so much since 1989, but it’s a fact. And it’s pity for them.

    https://ourworldindata.org/grapher/annual-co2-emissions-per-country?stackMode=relative&time=1989..latest&facet=none&country=OWID_WRL~Upper-middle-income+countries~Low-income+countries~Lower-middle-income+countries~High-income+countries~CHN

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    • #
      Neville

      Sorry that’s not the correct graph that I wanted to show. It seems the software has turned against me today. Worked okay yesterday but not today.

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    Philip

    This is why the greens are so depressed still. I often wonder why they are, given they are winning the argument hands down, but this is it, the terrible bind of reality. Greens still see the corporate world as big bad greedy machines and the media as their evil tycoon twin.

    Guy McPherson is my favourite, he’s wildly depressed, a clear mental illness shines through. Guy believes the atmosphere is passed the tipping point and runaway irreversible intolerable heating and death has already begun. He believes they’re out to get him for speaking out, he mist be silenced. There is this deep melancholic tone to his voice and entire demeanor.

    And I guess if that’s what you believe, he has reason to be. First sign of trouble and the world runs to coal and China just does what it wants anyway, so no, its not going well for Guy. The destruction of western civilization as green ideas are robustly put into action by every western government on the planet, just isn’t cutting it for him, it’s not enough. But as guy says, he’s in a different mental state now, acceptance, I assume like prey taken by the predator and the biochemicals released calming the experience of finality. He’s a good watch, I’d recommend.

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    • #
      Ronin

      It’s a fair bet that climate activism and mental illness goes hand in hand.

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      • #

        The Greens are caught in an impossible bind. That’s why they are depressed. They look like they are winning the comms war — but we all know that they are hopelessly losing the CO2 war. Meaning that if you believe CO2 is going to heat the Earth, then doom is still coming. None of the Paris Agreements etc are enough. CO2 is not going down. Temperatures are “Bad”.

        Ultimately it’s painful being someone else’s useful idiot.

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    Hanrahan

    I just checked, coal spot price is 603% higher now than 5 yrs ago.

    Not bad for a stranded asset.

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    • #
      Hanrahan

      I’m reminded of a Yogi Berra quote when critiquing a restaurant: Nobody goes there any more, it’s too crowded.

      The greens will say that coal is no longer useful, it’s too expensive. Go figure.

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        Hanrahan

        By comparison the sun is free.

        My son has just taken a job at a solar farm, three yrs old and still with teething problems. [After three yrs they’re design problems] They are offering nearly mining wages with a vehicle as part of the package they are so troubled.

        They are blowing up inverters and multi-mW inverters aren’t cheap. Seems they’ve changed the mode of the inverters which has improved reliability but they are now blowing capacitors. But hey, it’s FREE.

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      Ronin

      Wish I’d bought shares.

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    David Maddison

    Usual laws for contracts or consumer purchases require something be “fit for purpose”.

    Clearly solar, wind and Big Batteries are incapable of providing adequate power at a reasonable cost so they are not fit for purpose.

    The only purpose of these parasitic technologies is to transfer wealth from ordinary people and industry to the Elites.

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    Ross

    I’ve suggested this before. Rather than sequester CO2 from the coal powered generators via scrubbers etc and pump down into the ground, just build a false large white pipe from the top of the smokestack and paint a very big ” CO2″ symbol on it. Paint the “CO2 ” in green accompanied by a downward pointing arrow. Make them visual so people driving past can easily see them. Hey presto, the people will think all that CO2 is being prevented from going into the atmosphere. All the media outlets can run with photos of it rather than the photo of cooling towers releasing water vapor. Really cheap- aboriginal flag on top of the Sydney Harbour Bridge cost $25m, those pipes would be heaps cheaper.

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    Alan M

    As a recently retired coal geologist I can just smile politely. If Australia had built 3 or 4 HELE stations about 10-15 yrs ago to replace those old buggers now being retired (hmmm), we could had have reduced CO2 emissions by about 20% (for what it’s worth) and had ample cheap electricity 24/7. Aaah again just smile and wave

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    CHRIS

    I know it is never going to happen, but a mix of: Coal, Gas, Hydro, Nuclear, Solar, Wind and Geothermal is the best answer for future electricity supply. As to the percentages, my answer would be (in concurrence with the above): 20%, 15%, 15%, 20%, 10%, 10%, 10%. Assuming that the coal-powered generators are HELE, then this, to me, is an ideal balance. However, I can dream…

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