The energy supply of the 21st century is more than ever shaped by coal. Almost all developing and threshold countries trust that coal is a long-term, reliable basis for the development of the economy and society.
According to estimates of the International Energy Agency (IEA), coal will have the same importance as oil for the world-wide supply of energy until 2030.
Hard coal and lignite represent approximately 80% of EU reserves of fossil fuels. As coal ensures safe, reliable, affordable and sustainable energy for all, it will be very much needed in the decades to come.
On a global scale coal is and will be energy No.1 for power generation. Coal-fired power generation technology still has substantial potential for development and cost-efficient climate protection with coal is already possible today.
Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) is important for international climate protection policies; it is expected to deliver one fifth of very ambitious GHG reductions by 2050. For CCS to become commercial in the next decades, an EU CCS demonstration network has to be created in this decade.
An appropriate climate protection policy must consider all greenhouse gas emissions from all fossil fuels.
An efficient and affordable CO2 transport network on European level is needed and the EU should pro-actively promote the creation of a CO2 infrastructure together with EU Member States.
Coal utilisation can co-exist with the development of power generation based considerably on renewables. Precisely new coal-fired power plants will be able to meet the variable feeding in of larger quantities of power from renewables much more flexibly and cover the gaps in supply.
EURACOAL is therefore focusing on the 3 following priorities:- addressing the slowdown of investment in new coal-fired power plants;
- promoting the successful demonstration of CCS, including transport and storage infrastructure;
- ensuring a rational EU energy policy that values a diversified energy mix, including coal.