Although natural gas has become the US’s go-to energy source, and both Europe and the US are bringing the proverbial hammer down on greenhouse gas emissions, coal is still in wide-use worldwide. China and India are the main culprits; since both countries are continuing to grow, they continue to use coal, since it’s one of the cheapest and most plentiful sources of energy. Together, the two countries are the reason coal consumption saw a three percent increase in 2013. Use of natural gas only rose in North America, while it fell everywhere else.
Though developed nations will continue to replace coal with renewable and cleaner energy sources, developing countries will continue to rely on coal, as coal will likely remain inexpensive and abundant.
While coal fulfilled 30.1 percent of the world’s energy needs in 2013, oil met 32.9 percent. The US invested a lot of time and money in fracking shale formations, which led to one of the biggest bouts of oil generation that we’ve seen.
But coal could still win the energy battle. In 2012, the International Energy Agency predicted that yearly worldwide consumption of coal would increase by 1.2 billion tons, making it the number one energy source in the world.
New climate policies by the US and Europe are bound to take a toll on the future of coal. Coal will become reliant on China, and even China is making an effort to decrease pollution and smog and use natural gas instead of coal.
Developed and Written by Dr. Subodh Das and Tara Mahadevan
June 30, 2014
Copyright 2013. All rights Reserved by Phinix, LLC.