According to a recent study – and as published on TheGuardian website – hundreds of coal companies worldwide are building new mines and power stations, which the researchers call a “reckless and irresponsible” plan to be thought of amid the climate emergency.
About 1,000 coal companies were accessed in the study, and only about 27 of them announced coal exit dates consistent with international climate targets. Since coal is the most polluting fossil fuel known to man, campaigners insist that coal usages should phase out quickly so as to mitigate climate crisis caused by coal mining. However, many coal companies are still looking towards expanding their assets – developing new coal assets.
- “Reckless” coal firms plan climate-busting expansion, study finds.
- Coal is the most polluting fossil fuel, and investors must stop funding it, say Urgewald.
- Coal companies are building new power stations and mines, study finds.
What’s The News?
With coal companies launching new mining projects, thermal coal production may increase by more than a third, which doesn’t mean well for the climate. Most of these coal companies launching new projects operate in China, India, Australia, Russia, and South Africa.
Particularly, Coal India is looking to increase the amount of coal it mines to 1bn tonnes a year by 2025, according to Urgewald’s analysis, making it the biggest mining company on the list. “The coal mining rush is a testament to the industry’s complete denial of climate reality. The writing is on the wall, but coal miners refuse to read it,” said Schücking.
Furthermore, the report found 476GW of new coal-fired power capacity in pipelines worldwide, which is equivalent to hundreds of new power stations. The projects would increase the world’s coal power capacity by 23% if built. China is responsible for 60% of all the planned new capacity.
To reach net zero carbon emissions by 2050, the IEA says, all coal power plants in rich countries must be retired by 2030 at the latest and by 2040 in the rest of the world. Urgewald’s study uncovers that only 27 companies out of 1,064 had announced such coal exit dates, while a vast majority of others are busily expanding their tentacles.
The US, which has the world’s third-largest number of coal plants, has not set a national end date for its coal power, unlike the UK, France, and Italy. The US would need to retire 30GW of coal-fired capacity a year up to 2030 to meet the Paris climate goals, the Urgewald report said, but only 8.4GW was closed down in 2021.
The German environmental group Urgewald, which claims to be the world’s most comprehensive public database on the coal industry, states that “Pursuing new coal projects in the midst of a climate emergency is reckless, irresponsible behavior. Investors, banks, and insurers should ban these coal developers from their portfolios immediately.” – Heffa Schücking, Urgewald’s Director.
This news was curled from TheGuardian in reference to the recent study by Urgewald on coal exits and the need for investors and financial institutions to come in and help.