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Coal in 'freefall' as new power plants dive by two-thirds


The amount of new coal power being built around the world fell by nearly two-thirds last year, prompting campaigners to claim the polluting fossil fuel was in freefall.

The dramatic decline in new coal-fired units was overwhelmingly due to policy shifts in China and India and subsequent declining investment prospects, according to a report by Greenpeace, the US-based Sierra Club and research network CoalSwarm.

The report said the amount of new capacity starting construction was down 62% in 2016 on the year before, and work was frozen at more than a hundred sites in China and India. In January, China’s energy regulator halted work on a further 100 new coal-fired projects, suggesting the trend was not going away.

More good new on the decline of coal. A good read for those who think we will be able to sell Adani's Carmichael coal to India.

Key Points

  • The amount of new coal power being built around the world fell by nearly two-thirds last year
  • Overwhelmingly due to policy shifts in China and India
  • New capacity starting construction was down 62% in 2016
  • Work was frozen at more than a hundred sites in China and India
  • China's energy regulator halted work on a further 100 new coal-fired projects, suggesting the trend was not going away
  • The amount of planned coal power capacity in January 2017 was 570GW, down from 1,090GW a year before


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