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Popular Science News | Coal King by 2017

Popular Science News – the word on the street is that coal will be the king of fuels by 2017.  The reason is that the price of coal has dropped making it a more attractive fuel than oil. In simple economics terms, the lack of popularity of coal has dropped the price making it more popular! The trouble is that unless anti-pollution measures are put into place the use of coal could return us to the days when smog was a killer.

However, coal use looks to be concentrated in emerging economies where cheap but dirty energy allows them to be highly competitive against clean energy using economies. In other words, countries like India and China against America and the EU. Irresponsible this may be but as the old UK Coal Board economist Ernst Schumacher, author of Small is Beautiful, was fond of pointing out oil is a fuel sourced from unstable countries and coal isn’t. He was also fond of pointing out that when it comes to a choice between the environment and economics, countries chose economics every time.

The future may be bright in fuel terms but it looks like the atmosphere may become blacker!

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