Mainstream media is waking up that despite billions invested in renewable energy, oil and coal use are surging.
Forget About Peak Oil – We Haven’t Even Reached Peak Coal Yet
Despite all the heavy dissemination of narratives and talking points about a “climate emergency” and the “energy transition” during 2021, the ongoing economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic proves that the world still heavily relies on fossil fuels to provide its constantly growing energy needs. Indeed, as the pushers of Peak Oil demand theory try in vain to revive their own always-wrong narrative, it now appears that the world has yet to even meet the peak of demand for the least environmentally friendly fuel of all, coal.
This is especially true in China, India and much of Asia, where thousands of coal-fired power plants have seen record usage levels in the face of a major heat wave this summer. Bloomberg reported last week that China’s enormous demand for coal this summer has caused commodity prices to spike to the highest level seen in 2 months, briefly climbing above 900 yuan/ton (roughly $139.31 at current exchange rates) on Friday.
The global futures price for coal set a new record high in May as supplies ran low. Australian coal – China’s main international supplier – hit $150 per ton in July, the highest level seen since 2008. The demand is so high in China that it has even led to implementation of electricity rationing in some parts of the country as supplies run short.
This spike in coal demand and usage is far from limited to Asia. The Wall Street Journal reported in early July that coal-fired power usage was also spiking in European countries like Germany and France, both of which spent years loudly boasting of their plans to eliminate coal from their energy profiles.
In the meantime, the United States has been able to cut its own carbon emissions to levels not achieved since the early 1990s mainly by replacing retiring coal-fired power plants with power provided by natural gas. Thanks to the Shale revolution, which is enabled by hydraulic fracturing – “fracking” – the U.S. possesses such enormously abundant supplies of natural gas that it has been able to develop a robust business sector for the export of liquefied natural gas (LNG). The country now ranks among the three top exporters of LNG, along with Qatar and Australia.
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Just to add to the fun, talking about peak oil and peak coal as if they are different targets is fundamentally wrong.