Major Chinese coal producers have started raising production, the China Securities Journal reported on Wednesday, potentially unleashing 11 million tonnes of new supply each month onto the market and derailing the meteoric rally in Asian prices. The move followed a meeting earlier this month to draw up a draft proposal that would allow miner to raise daily output by 500,000 tonnes if prices hit 500 yuan ($74.94) per tonne for two weeks. China’s biggest coal producer Shenhua Group has been given the green light to increase output by 2.79 million tonnes a month from 14 mines, said the paper. —Reuters, 23 September 2016
Ban Ki-Moon and the rest of the national and UN delegates involved in getting the Paris deal past the “ratification” phase can pat each other on the back til their hands are sore — and we don’t doubt that they will — but it won’t change the fact that this “treaty” is worth little more than the paper it’s printed on. —The American Interest, 21 September 2016
President Rodrigo Duterte once again lashed out at the Western powers, singling out the European Union (EU) for what he calls the “hypocrisy” on the part of the highly industrialized countries in trying to regulate the use of non-renewable energy sources of developing nations like the Philippines. Duterte said the EU wanted the third-world nations to lower the emission of carbon in such a way that these countries could not move forward with their development agenda due to the energy protocols being set by the international environment-regulating bodies. “Kataw-anan ning mga puti (these Caucasians are funny),” Duterte said, referring to the EU and the United States. “If we want to industrialize our country, because we are left behind by so many generations, we have to keep up with developments. [And the main option] right now is coal because it’s cheap, it’s available, although it may have impact on the planet,” Duterte said during the inauguration of the FDC Misamis Power Corp. 405-megawatt coal-fired power plant in Villanueva, Misamis Oriental, Thursday afternoon, September 22. —Jigger J Jerusalem, Sun Star, 23 September 2016
The ability of policymakers in Beijing to roil global commodity markets has been underlined by a breath-taking rally in a key steelmaking ingredient that has caught consumers cold, but promises a profit windfall for the struggling mining industry.
The price of premium hard coking coal has more than doubled in the past six weeks to more than $200 a tonne as supplies have dwindled and buyers have scrambled to find cargoes in the spot market. –Neil Hume, Financial Times, 22 September 2016
As part of its energy security efforts, the Indian government is planning an ambitious coal project in Mozambique which involves mining and creating infrastructure for transportation of the fuel to India. Coal has an important place in India’s energy mix. Of India’s installed power generation capacity of 304,761 megawatt (MW), 61% or 186,293MW is fuelled by coal. Given that India wants to improve its per capita electricity consumption of 1,010 kilowatt hour and double it in the next seven years, coal will continue to play an important role in its fuel mix. —InfraCircle, 22 September 2016
President Barack Obama’s signature initiative for Africa — a $9.7 billion plan to double electricity access in the world’s poorest continent — has fallen well short of its goals, so far producing less than 5 percent of the new power generation it promised. Obama announced Power Africa three years ago with an ambitious goal: to add 10,000 megawatts of power and supply electricity to 20 million households within five years. As he addressed the U.S.-Africa Business Forum in New York on Wednesday, the project has yielded less than 400 megawatts of new power after running into political and economic difficulties. The program’s shortfalls mean that when Obama leaves office, the nation’s first black president and the son of a Kenyan farmer won’t be able to claim a legacy-defining endeavor in Africa. –Toluse Olorunnipa and Tope Alake, Bloomberg, 21 September 2016