For decades, coal had been shrinking in its percentage of global energy use, due to its dirty nature as well as the destructive manner in which it is extracted. But in the past year, it has had a resurgence, growing by 5.4% in the past year to the highest point it has been since 1969. It now accounts for 30.9% of global energy use, surpassed only by oil. According to this report from British Petroleum, worldwide demand for coal is not only increasing, they expect it to continue to increase far faster than other sources for the immediate future.
The main reasons given? The spike in growth in developing nations. Due to the migration of manufacturing and labor from industrialized nations, which moved away from coal due to the numerous issues associated, to these undeveloped nations, there has been a spike in the demand for cheap power. The cheapest power to set up, if you do not address its cost to clean up, is coal, with the result being this global trend. With the growth in outsourcing and offshoring fueling this spike in coal demand, is it any wonder that certain political camps are eager to increase the rate of both?