Feature Reports

Coal Producers and Consumers

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© AFP PHOTO / Saul LOEB

Despite its high carbon emissions, coal is the second most widely used energy in the world and the number one energy source for power generation. Its reserves are well distributed across the planet and production meets local needs. 

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Global Coal Consumption

Global coalCoal is ranked by its degree of transformation or maturity, increasing in carbon content from... consumption fell slightly between 2018 and 2019, reflecting lower volumes in the United States, where gas is eating into coal’s market share, and in Europe (Germany, Poland and the Ukraine). Consumption continued to advance in China and Indonesia, but was flat in India.

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Global Coal Reserves

The United States has the largest coalCoal is ranked by its degree of transformation or maturity, increasing in carbon content from... reserves in the world, with Russia, Australia, China and India trailing far behind. China is undertaking sweeping reforms of its mining sector, closing many small operations in favor of larger, more technically advanced mines.

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Global Coal Production

Global coalCoal is ranked by its degree of transformation or maturity, increasing in carbon content from... production experienced further growth, but at a slower rate than in previous periods. Output ticked back up in China, but fell in the United States. Europe also posted sharp declines, particularly Germany, Poland and the Ukraine. China was responsible for nearly half of all global coal production. Indonesia overtook the United States to become the second biggest producer.

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